Defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Friday 1 June 2018 said the state governments have
still not given their consent to bring petrol and diesel under GST, but Union minister of petroleum,
Dharmendra Pradhan, is holding discussions with the oil companies to chalk out
alternative ways to bring down fuel prices.
Sitharaman, who was in Ludhiana on
Friday to interact with media persons on completion of four years of Modi
government, was all praises for the government. She said, the Centre alone
cannot be blamed for the fuel price rise as the state governments have not given
their consent to bring petrol and diesel under GST in the meeting of GST
council as they, on an average, earn Rs 7-9 crores per day from the fuel sale
under the present taxation structure. “Neither BJP, nor any of our leaders is
running away from this issue and we are answering such questions on every
platform,” had she added.
Showering praises on her government, Sitharaman
said, “People have shown full faith on our government and every citizen is
supporting the policies of BJP and Modi government. The results of bypoll
cannot be connected with the people’s mood for 2019. There could be other
reasons behind the verdict. During the past 48 months, Modi government has
worked for development of all the sectors and for people from all walks of
Speaking on the recent bonhomie shown
by the opposition parties after the Karanataka elections, Sitharaman said,
“Voters are understanding every move of these parties who are indulging in
petty politics just to grab power at any cost and this is not going to impact
us in any way as people of the country are with BJP.
Sitharaman also said the government has
allocated a historic budget of Rs 95,000 crores for the welfare of backward
communities. Ensuring commitment with action, the government further has strengthened
SC/ST Atrocities Act. Quantitative achievements like increase in scholarships
to students and more than 50% beneficiaries of Mudra Yojna belonging to
backward communities mark government’s effort for holistic development of the
backward communities. Around 12 crore Mudra loans are sanctioned since the
start of the initiative in April 2015. Also, the budget allocation for 2018-19
was raised to Rs 3 lakh crore amounting to a rise of 20% over the previous
year, she added.
Earlier in the day, Sitharaman was welcomed by
the local BJP leaders including former state president Rajinder Bhandari,
district president Ravinder Arora, state finance secretary Gurdev Sharma Debi,
Anil Sareen, Sanjay Kapoor, Jatinder Mittal and others.