Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu today justified three rupees hike in Value Added Tax on Diesel and claimed that it is still less than the states of Punjab, Haryana, and Uttrakhand.
Interacting with a Media person here today Mr Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu said that VAT had been hiked with a motive to increase state resources after recent heavy loss caused due to rainfall however the hike in VAT on diesel is being done owing to variation in the prices of diesel between state and nearby border states. He said it was during the 2022 Election that the former BJP government decided to reduce VAT on fuel prices by Rs seven per litre which was much less than another state. He said that the government had hiked VAT on Diesel in December 2022 by Rs per liter and it was increased again to Rs three per liter.
He said that it is not Himachal Pradesh that had hiked VAT on fuel prices but states like Punjab, Haryana, and Uttrakhand are levying much higher VAT on diesel than Himachal Pradesh. He said that it is essential to keep the prices of diesel and petrol at par with other states and states couldn’t be a lone exception.
He said that Minister and MLAs have decided to provide their one-month salary to State flood relief operations and all state employees also contribute one day’s salary.
He said that the state received Rs 150 Crores as an advance installment to calamity relief funds however center didn’t announce any package or additional relief to the state to assist in relief operations to maintain affected roads and infrastructure.
Mr. Sukhu said that he had called home minister Amit Shah urging the centre to provide central assistance and the center has assured him to announce it soon.
Mr Sukhu said that it would take at least one year to rebuild the lost infrastructure to normal and the state is trying hard to get additional funds from the center and all concerned departments besides creating more resources with peoples support so that the people who has suffered the loss of property and life could be compensated.
He expressed happiness that not a single tourist died in the torrential rain and flashflood from insistent rainfall from July 7 to 10 and about 70,000 Tourists who have stranded in the state were evacuated from the state till this morning.