Chidambaram dubs imposition of taxes on fuel as 'cruel' in times of distress; says govt must borrow to meet deficits

Governments must borrow to meet their deficits and not impose higher tax burdens when economic activity has ground to a halt amid the coronavirus pandemic, senior Congress leader P Chidambaram said on Wednesday after the Centre and the Delhi government hiked taxes on petroleum products

Press Trust of India May 06, 2020 14:23:10 IST
Chidambaram dubs imposition of taxes on fuel as 'cruel' in times of distress; says govt must borrow to meet deficits

New Delhi: Governments must borrow to meet their deficits and not impose higher tax burdens when economic activity has ground to a halt amid the coronavirus pandemic, senior Congress leader P Chidambaram said on Wednesday after the Centre and the Delhi government hiked taxes on petroleum products.

New or higher taxes are justified only when the economy is booming, the former finance minister said, dubbing the imposition of taxes as "cruel".

Tax burdens on the middle class and the poor is actually taxing distress, he said in a series of tweets.

Chidambaram dubs imposition of taxes on fuel as cruel in times of distress says govt must borrow to meet deficits

File image of P Chidambaram. PTI

"Governments should give money to the people in times of distress, not squeeze and take money from the people," Chidambaram said.

"We have been pleading for cash transfers from the government to the bottom half of the people/families. Instead, governments are doing a reverse transfer of money from the people to the government! Cruel," he said.

Click here to follow LIVE news and updates on stock markets

New or higher taxes will impoverish families further, Chidambaram asserted.

"Governments must borrow to meet their deficits, not impose higher tax burdens when economic activity has ground to a halt," he said.

Chidambaram''s remarks come after the central government on Tuesday night hiked the excise duty on petrol by a steep Rs 10 per litre and that on diesel by Rs 13 a litre.

Retail prices of petrol and diesel will not be impacted by the tax changes as state-owned oil firms will adjust them against the recent fall in oil prices, industry officials said.

Petrol prices in the national capital were hiked by Rs 1.67 a litre and diesel by a steep Rs 7.10 per litre after the Delhi government raised local sales tax or value-added tax (VAT) on the two fuels.

Petrol in Delhi now costs Rs 71.26 a litre as against Rs 69.59 previously, oil industry sources said. Diesel price has been hiked to Rs 69.39 per litre from Rs 62.29.

Struggling with low revenues during the lockdown, several states have also hiked taxes on alcohol

Updated Date:

Find latest and upcoming tech gadgets online on Tech2 Gadgets. Get technology news, gadgets reviews & ratings. Popular gadgets including laptop, tablet and mobile specifications, features, prices, comparison.

also read

French Open 2020 to allow fans amid resurgence of COVID-19 cases; players to stay in two mandatory hotels
Sports

French Open 2020 to allow fans amid resurgence of COVID-19 cases; players to stay in two mandatory hotels

French officials have confirmed more than 30,000 deaths from COVID-19 while the number of new daily cases surpassed 8,000 last Friday.

Italian Open 2020 semi-finals and finals to have up to 1,000 spectators in attendance
Sports

Italian Open 2020 semi-finals and finals to have up to 1,000 spectators in attendance

The Italian Open tournament, which features nine-time champion Rafael Nadal and top-ranked Novak Djokovic, has so far been played without fans because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Bundesliga: Bayern Munich's Kingsley Coman in isolation at home after contact with coronavirus-positive person
Sports

Bundesliga: Bayern Munich's Kingsley Coman in isolation at home after contact with coronavirus-positive person

Bayern didn't say how long the France winger would need to spend in quarantine, or whether he's available to play Schalke on Friday in the German champion's first league game of the new season.