KPCC Chief criticises hike in taxes and water tariff

Friday, Sep 19, 2014,19:05 IST By metrovaartha A A A

Even as Congress led UDF government defended its decision to hike taxes, water tariff and service fees, Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee President V M Sudheeran today called for a relook at some of the proposals, especially the water charge increase.
The government should examine the decision to hike taxes and water tariff. The KPCC will study the matter and submit a report to the government, Sudheeran told reporters in Thiruvananthapuram.
He, however, criticised CPI-M’s call for tax boycott as part of the agitation to be launched by LDF against the government.
Finance Minister K M Mani defended the government’s decision to hike taxes on liquor, tobacco and fees for various government services through an ordinance.
There are constitutional provisions for an elected government to revise taxes by issuing ordinance, Mani said referring to CPI-M criticism that the move was unconstitutional and undemocratic.
Slamming CPI-M call for tax boycott, Home Minister Ramesh Chennithala said this was an undemocratic method and one would not be allowed to take law into their hands.
The CPI(M) had threatened to unleash a massive agitation and urged the people to desist from paying the increase including the new rates of water charges.
The LDF state committee is meeting here on Sunday to chalk out the details of the agitation.
Faced with a grim funds crunch arising mainly from its policy of sharply cutting down on the liquor business, the Government had on August 17 steeply increased taxes on liquor, cigarettes, water charges and fees for various services to mop up about Rs 2000 crore.