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In NDA rule, Badal softens stand on diesel price hike
Sunday June 1, 2014 10:03 PM, IANS

A few months back, Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal had described the UPA's 50 paise hike in diesel prices as a "criminal conspiracy" but when the price was hiked by the same amount Saturday by the NDA government, he just batted for cheaper prices.

Reacting to the latest hike in diesel prices, Badal Sunday said diesel should be included in the list of essential commodities as it would directly help in reducing inflation across the country.

Assuring that he would take up the matter with the Narendra Modi government "once the newly-appointed ministers settle down for work", Badal said diesel was a catalyst for growth in the agriculture and transport sector. By lowering its price, huge relief could be given to people, he said.

Badal had earlier slammed the UPA government for the diesel price hike, terming it as a "criminal conspiracy", "anti-people" and totally unjustified. He had said that the hike would adversely affect farmers by giving a "fatal blow to the agriculture sector" and also disturb the kitchen budget of common families.

Punjab Congress president Partap Singh Bajwa Sunday slammed the diesel price hike and said Badal's "double standards" on the issue stood exposed.

Bajwa demanded that Badal should now oppose the diesel price hike.

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