As the price of commercial LPG cylinders was hiked by ₹351 on Wednesday, March 1, representatives of Bruhat Bengaluru Hoteliers Association (BBHA) have decided to meet Hardeep Singh Puri, Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas, in New Delhi on March 16.
P.C. Rao, president BBHA said that abnormally increasing the prices of LPG cylinders will affect the hospitality industry badly. “Our earlier requests to reduce GST on commercial LPG from 18% to 5% is also not considered,” he said. The hoteliers, however, said that there will be no increase in the prices of food items in hotels and restaurants for now.
Apart from the commercial sector, an increase of ₹50 in the rate of domestic LPG cylinders has received flak from citizens. “Now it has become so that the prices of all commodities change every month. Last month, I paid ₹1055 for the cylinder and if this month I have to pay ₹1103, then my expenditure on all the other things such as groceries and vegetables will have to change accordingly,” said V. M. Girija, a homemaker from Jalahalli.
“Usually, before elections they reduce prices, but this time they have increased the price of cylinder. Even an increase of ₹50 can affect a home runner’s budget. It looks like the government does not care about the burdens of middle class and lower middle-class citizens,” said Prakash Santhanam, a resident of R.T. Nagar.
Opposition lashes out
Leaders of opposition parties also criticised the government for hiking the prices of cylinder when there is inflation of prices of all commodities.
“Closing down Indira Canteens, cutting down Anna Bhagya rice and now increasing cylinder prices will have adverse impact on addressing hunger issue and malnutrition. India’s hunger index has worsened since Narendra Modi government came to power,” said Congress leader and former Chief Minister Siddaramaiah.
The JD(S) also took to Twitter to condemn the price hike in a series of tweets: “The heat of inflation will again make the people of the country suffer. Shocking news has been reported that there has been an increase of ₹50 for cooking gas cylinders for domestic use and ₹350.50 for commercial cylinders. When the country’s economy is in trouble, how is it right to burn a hole in people’s pockets?”