EC pulls up Govt. over LPG sop, demands Moily's answer
Taking note of the Centre's move to increase the cap on subsidised LPG cylinders from six to nine, the Election Commission of India on Tuesday asked the government to stop it immediately and demanded an answer from Union Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister Dr. M. Veerappa Moily. A livid Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) earlier lashed out at the Congress Party on the move, saying it was a desperate attempt on part of the ruling party at the Centre to woo the voters ahead of the Gujarat assembly polls. BJP spokesperson Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said 'this is a political stunt of the Congress Party, which is desperate and has no core issues in its kitty to forward before the people of the country'. "This is a despicable attempt of the Congress Party to loot the country, for which the people would never forgive their misdeeds, and this attempt of the Congress Party to woo the voters ahead of the Gujarat assembly polls has equally violated the election code of conduct as in the case of the cash transfer scheme," he added. Dr. Moily earlier this evening said that the government is considering raising the cap on subsidised LPG cylinders from six to nine in a year. He, however, said that the Union Cabinet would take a final decision in this regard.
"The capping must be done by the Cabinet, " he said.
When asked whether he had spoken to Finance Minister P. Chidambaram in this regard, Dr. Moily said "I had two rounds of discussion with him. And now we are working on that."
To a poser on whether the oil marketing companies would now be getting the direct compensation for the extra LPG burden, he said "That we are working out; we are working out certain formula to neutralize the loss."