Fuel Price Rise: Why Are Modi Govt & Bollywood Actors Silent Now?
Those who were in Opposition before 2014 Elections and raised slogans are silent on petrol-diesel price hike now.
Video Editor: Vivek Gupta
On 26 May 2012, actor Amitabh Bachchan tweeted, "Lord Ram once told Sita that a kalyug will come when people will buy car with cash and take loan to buy petrol."
Similarly actors Akshay Kumar and Anupam Kher had posted tweets in May 2011 and October 2012, mocking the rising petrol and diesel prices then.
These are all old tweets, posted before 2014. No new tweets from them on this, so we didn't list them. Old tweets remind me of an old proverb Padhe Farsi, Beche Tel (Studies Persian, but sells oil). But now, this proverb has been modified. Now we say, Padhe Farsi, Beche Tel, Jo Vipaksh Mein Baithke Karte The Halla, Aj Woh Khud Ho Gaye Fail (Studies Persian but sells oil, Those who shouted while in Opposition have failed today).
Diesel Sees 'Vikas' Amid COVID-19 Pandemic
Since independence, for the first time, diesel prices have raced past petrol, creating new records. Ahead of the 2014 general elections, BJP's full team - Narendra Modi, Prakash Javadekar, Smriti Irani and Rajnath Singh - raised their voice against fuel price hike during the then Manmohan Singh-led UPA government. But now that fuel prices are burning a hole in people's pockets, there are no tweets from actors, no 'fire' on TV screens and the word 'fuel' is missing from netas' rally speeches. Hence the janta is bound to ask, 'Janab Aise Kaise?'
Amid the pandemic, rise in fuel prices for 21 days in a row is adding an insult to injury. Petrol has increased by Rs 9.17/L and diesel by almost Rs 12/L. In October 2018, diesel prices had increased to almost Rs 76/L even though back then the price of crude oil was close to $21 per barrel.
Reality of Fuel Price Rise
Inflation and corruption were big issues in the 2014 general elections. Slogans such as, 'we have had enough of fuel price rise, now it is time for Modi sarkar' were chanted. Slogans converted to votes and Modi came to power. And here's a comparison of petrol and diesel prices when Modi government came to power in June 2014 and June 2020.
Price of Crude Oil in June 2014 and June 2020
Price of Petrol and Diesel in June 2014 and June 2020
Excise Duty On Petrol and Diesel in June 2014 and June 2020
Now, the big question is who is benefiting from increasing fuel prices. The answer is, the government. Because central and state governments are heavily dependent on the taxes on fuel price.
More Than 60% Tax on Fuel Price
You pay more than 60% tax when you buy petrol or diesel. Your car hits the roads only after you pay:
Central excise tax
According to a report in Financial Express, one has to pay a tax of close to Rs 50/L, that is 64% on petrol and 63% on diesel. One has to pay close to Rs 49/L as tax on diesel that is priced at over Rs 80/L. Diesel price rise is a big blow to farmers and common man.
But those who raised their voices against fuel prices ahead of the 2014 elections are silent now. Now looking back at the speeches and tweets by netas and abhinetas, the common man is bound to ask, 'Janab Aise Kaise?'
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