The AIKSCC has demanded decrease in fuel prices to half, at least to price of Air Turbine fuel, Rs 44 per litre in order to reduce the burden on the peasantry. It will also help to revive Indian markets and economy by increasing income of 80 crore farmers.
Farmers all over the country are holding a nation wide protest on August 9, the anniversary of Quit India movement with the slogan ‘Corporate Bhagao, Kisani Bachao’.
Addressing a national campaign on face book live, WG member and GS, AIKMS, Dr. Ashish Mital said that today total taxes on diesel and petrol are around Rs. 51, which is 65% of the cost, while ready to sell fuel is around Rs. 26 – 28 only. The tax includes central excise duty of Rs. 32.98 on petrol which was only Rs 9.20 in November 2014 and Rs 31.83 on diesel which was only Rs 30.46 then. VAT of Rs 18 per litre is additional.
The govt has been raising fuel taxes to shore up its income. While it allots high margins to companies and then claims it is giving fuel subsidy, while in reality it is heavily taxing it. Similarly it claims high agriculture subsidy even though high diesel prices affects cost of inputs, tilling, harvesting, transport and processing of food crops and is a negative subsidy. It thus extracts out of the labour of farmers and just as the British extracted ‘lagaan’ it extracts fuel taxes.
This taxation is much higher than what the govts of our neighbours charge. In Pakistan petrol costs an equivalent of Rs 45 and diesel Rs 45.75, in Srilanka Rs 65.25 and Rs 42, in Bangladesh Rs 78.75 and Rs 57.75. Indian prices are Rs 83.75 and Rs 79.50 as per the international fuel pricing list.
The high taxation is to overcome heavy expenditures being made by the govt to cover up corporate losses. The GOI paid Indian banks Rs 68,607 crores in April 2020 to waive debts of 50 richest Indians. The present NPAs are around Rs 8.5 lac crores and another Rs 6 lac crores are slated to build up by March 2021. Either the govt pays this to banks or the banks will suffer losses and tell common account holders that their money is lost. The govt in not ready to recover this money from big corporate houses from who it is due.