Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam chief M.Karunanidhi said his party, a constituent of the United Progressive Alliance, was not consulted before the diesel price hike was announced.

Talking to presspersons here, on Friday, he said he had already issued a condemnation of the hike. “If we had been consulted, there would have been no need for me to do so,” Mr. Karunanidhi said. In fact, he had not even been informed by the Congress on the diesel hike, and party MP T.R. Baalu also issued a statement to that effect.

Asked if his stand was similar to that of the Trinamool Congress Mamata Banerjee that she would reconsider her support to the UPA government to protest against the diesel hike, Mr. Karunanidhi said he did not know how to issue threats.

Desiya Murpokku Dravida Kazhagam head and leader of the Opposition Vijayakant said the diesel price hike would increase the cost of public transportation, thereby leading to great hardship for the common people.

The prices of essential commodities were also likely to shoot up and impact severely the lives of the middle classes. He called for an immediate rollback of the diesel price hike and the restricted supply of subsidised LPG cylinders.

Tamil Nadu Congress Committee leader B.S.Gnanadesikan appealed to the Union government to withdraw the excise tax on diesel. If the State governments also desisted from levying sales tax, it would be possible to ensure that the cascading effect on the public is reduced.

Fishermen should be provided diesel at old rates or provided a grant by the State to buy diesel.

More In: Tamil Nadu | National