Former MLA Sabhapathi said that the UPA Government had thrown to the winds the concept of social justice

U.R. Sabhapathi, former MLA, said on Monday that the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) Government had heaped misery on the common man by increasing in fuel prices 15 times in three years.

Speaking at a dharna organised by the district unit of Janata Dal (Secular) in front of the Clock Tower near the Service Bus Stand in Udipi against the rise in the prices of petroleum products by the UPA Government, Mr. Sabhapathi said that the UPA Government had thrown to the winds the concept of social justice.

The Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) were two faces of the same coin as far as corruption was concerned. Hence, the BJP had no moral right to hold an agitation against the increase in fuel prices, he said.

Deviprasad Shetty, president of district unit of JD(S), said the increase in the price of diesel would lead to an increase in the prices of all essential commodities. The JD(S) supported the nationwide “bandh” called by the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) Government and Left parties on September 20, he said.

The protesters prepared tea by using firewood and drank it as part of their protest.

Meanwhile members of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) also staged a dharna in front of the Clock Tower near Service Bus Stand against increase in diesel price.

Speaking on the occasion, Lalaji Mendon, Kaup MLA, said the Centre’s move would hit the common man hard. Already, the prices of essential commodities had gone through the roof. The recent increase would be like rubbing salt into a wound. K. Shankar Poojary, president of zilla panchayat, said the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) Government had increased the price of fuel 16 times during its tenure. It would be better if the allies of the UPA came out of the Government and paved the way for a new regime, he said.

M. Ratnakar Hegde, BJP leader, demanded the resignation of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh for mismanaging the economy. His economic policies have only helped the rich, he said.

In Mangalore

Mangalore Special Correspondent writes: The BJP workers staged a protest in front of the office of the Deputy Commissioner in Udipi on Monday protesting against rise in fuel prices, cap on the subsidy for cooking gas, and allowing foreign direct investment (FDI) in multi-brand retail sector.

Nalin Kumar Kateel, Member of Parliament, criticised the Centre for raising price of diesel and reducing the number of subsidised cooking gas cylinders to the consumers. The decision of the Government would hit the people hard. With the diesel turning dearer, the transportation cost would escalate leading to rise in prices of all commodities.

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