Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam president M. Karunanidhi, an ally of the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance, on Friday came down on the Centre’s decision to “deregulate” pricing of diesel and said that allowing oil companies to make a small quantum of change in the price was a wrong move.

“The poor and middle class cannot afford an increase of 50 paise per month. Moreover, the hike will have direct bearing on all other essential commodities,” he said in a statement.

Reacting to Petroleum Secretary G.C. Chaturvedi’s explanation that government had not deregulated the diesel prices but only a small quantum of change had been permitted over a period of time, he said even this was a wrong move.

“The Parliamentary Standing Committee has recommended that the cap on domestic cylinders could be increased to 12. The government should consider the proposal and it is the only way to escape the anger of the people,” he said.

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