Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal slammed the hike in railway fares while accusing the UPA government of being "least sensitive" to hardships of the common man.
In a statement issued here, Badal said the hike of 2 to 10 paise per km in rail fare was a "stab in the back" of countrymen, especially the poor, for whom railway is the only affordable mode of transport.
Badal said this hike in the fare of railways would certainly put a hole in the pocket of common man and make his life further miserable considering fares of other transport, including state roadways buses have, already gone up due to a hike in diesel prices.
Reacting sharply to media reports on the proposed move to hike the price of subsidised LPG cylinders by Rs 130 and increasing diesel prices Rs 1 per litre every month for next 10 to 15 months, Badal said, "it will inflict another blow to the countrymen."
Cautioning the UPA government to desist from such "anti-people" moves, Badal reminded them of the upcoming 2014 Lok Sabha polls saying, "UPA cannot take the innocent voters of the country for a ride as one can befool a person only once."
Meanwhile, Indian National Lok Dal, the opposition party in Haryana, also chastised the rail fare hike announced by the Centre today.
"We want a rollback immediately," INLD, Secretary General, Ajay Chautala said in a statement.
Upset over rail fare hike, Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha (BJYM) held demonstration against the fare hike here.
Protesters led by BJYM President, Maheshinder Singh Sidhu raised slogans against Railways Minister Pawan Kumar Bansal and burned his effigy.
Sidhu said the hike in rail fares is not at all justified and it will further burden the common man, who is already reeling under severe inflation. PTI CHS BOD HU 01092042 NNNN