Bandh response unprecedented, claims Jaitley
Claiming that the opposition-sponsored Bharat Bandh against price rise had been an "unprecedented" success, BJP leader Arun Jaitley on Monday asked the government to bring down the "level of arrogance" and realise the "misery of the common man".
"When the inflation is already crossing double digit figure, when the food inflation is unprecedented in the last two years, there is no point adding fuel to the fire that the government is doing by hiking the oil prices," Jaitley said after his arrest in Lucknow.
Jaitley alongwith BJP leaders Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi, Lalji Tandon and party supporters was arrested while taking out a procession here in support of the nation-wide bandh against fuel price hike.
Terming the bandh as an "unprecedented success", Jaitley said "Now this protest will go on the whole day. We have had initial information of a very successful Bharat Bandh. It is an unprecedented success... we are getting messages from all across the country."
"In fact, this protest has been widely supported by even the average common man because he is really the target of the UPA policies," he said.
Jaitley said protest against the government's policies will go on and "will be eventually reflected in what happens in Parliament."
When told that the common man is suffering due to the bandh, he said, "There are extraordinary situations where political parties lead the people....people silently sympathise with them.
"Today, a large number of people are also on the roads and actually sympathising and cooperating with us," he said.
Admitting that bandh is causing problems for the people, he said, "Yes, protests do cause inconvenience because of traffic jams. But then the average citizen in the country realises that he has the rest of the year for himself."
He said the common man has to spare one day to "save himself from the oppressive policies of UPA government", to ensure that "these oppressive steps are retracted". He asked asked the government to bring down the "level of arrogance and realise the misery of the common man".
Jaitley said prices were under control during NDA rule.
Blaming the UPA policy for skyrocketing prices, he said, "Prices are unprecedented. You can always neutralise increase in oil prices by bringing down the element of tax component...so that taxes remain revenue-neutral."
Asserting that the bandh had been a peaceful one, he said, "We want it to be a peaceful but massive protest. That is what we are doing. Nobody from the Opposition is going to indulge in any disruption which result in violence and damage the public property....we hope police do not take any oppressive action against protesters."