The petrol price increase that came into force since midnight on Sunday is being widely criticised by all sections of society. Various political organisations organised protest programmes in different parts of the city on Saturday as soon as the announcement was made.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) organised a protest march on Sunday through Muthalakkulam, Palayam and S.M. Street and burned Prime Minister Manmohan in effigy near the S.K. Pottekkat Statue at Mananchira.

Centre condemned

BJP State president V. Muraleedharan said the increase was a gift from the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) to people of Kerala for letting them win the election to the Kerala Assembly. He said the move was a reflection of the anti-people policy of Dr. Singh and the UPA government.

The Janata Dal (Secular) organised a rally pulling bikes with ropes through the city.

The Centre for Indian Trade Unions too organised a protest march.

The Democratic Youth Federation of India conducted a protest and laid siege to the petrol pumps on Link Road in the night on Saturday.

They stated that the increase in price was a challenge towards common people and warned the Union Ministers from the State that they would not be allowed to walk free if the decision was not repealed immediately.

The Socialist Janata (Democratic) party urged the Central government not to crucify ordinary people to appease petroleum companies.

Petrol pump siege

Malabar Chamber of Commerce president P.G. Anoop Narayanan pointed out that a consumer State like Kerala would not be able to cope with the huge increase in the prices of commodities as a result of the petrol price increase. Autorickshaw workers in the city laid siege to the petrol pumps on Kallai Road and organised a protest march through Palayam and Link Road.

Meanwhile, the petrol pumps in the city witnessed huge crowds on Saturday night with people purchasing as much petrol as possible before the increase in prices came into force. Many pumps ran out of their stock by evening.

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