Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, June 20:
The Odisha government, which hiked the price of diesel and petrol barely two days ago, today termed the hike in railway fare by Centre as an anti-middle class and anti-poor move.
“Fare hike across the board will affect the passengers at large and more particularly poor people travelling in sleeper class. Hike in freight charges will further aggravate inflation and lead to price rise affecting people at large. This is anti-middle class and anti-poor people move,” said Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik in his reaction to the proposed rail fare hike, to be implemented from June 25.
The Railway Ministry on Friday effected a steep across-the-board hike of 14.2% in passenger fares in all classes and a 6.5% increase in freight rates to garner Rs. 8000 crore a year.
The decision is in line with an announcement made earlier on May 16, the day Lok Sabha election results came out, when the hike was announced by the UPA government but put on hold immediately.