NSU demonstrates against infrastructure tax raise on petrol, corruption

KATHMANDU, March 1: The Nepal Student Union (NSU), student wing of the main opposition party Nepali Congress, has staged demonstrations across the country on Sunday against the government’s recent decision to collect the additional infrastructure development tax on petroleum products.

A meeting of the Council of Ministers of Friday had decided to raise the tax on petroleum products by Rs 5 per liter.

The government has already been collecting Rs 5 per liter since the fiscal year 2017/18 to finance the Budhigandaki Project. With the raise, the government collects a total of Rs 10.

“The government has not utilized Rs 41 billion collected by increasing the petrol cost by Rs 5 in the name of Budigandaki. The recent decision to impose additional infrastructure tax in condemnable,” the NSU said in a press release on Saturday and announced the nation-wide protest programs.

The student union has also criticized the government for “covering” Baskota, who resigned on Feb 20 after he was caught bargaining for Rs 700 million bribe with a local agent of a Swiss company over the procurement of security printing press in a leaked audio recording.

“The corrupt government has tried to cover Baskota only asking for his resignation. We demand an investigation and action against the ex-minister,” the NSU stated.

The NSU has also demanded the cancellation of 10 percent tax imposed on books, and guarantee of election of the FSU.

The NSU demonstrated at the gate of different campuses across the nation including Tri-Chandra, Shankar Dev, Saraswoti, Patan Multiple, Pashupati Multiple of Kathmandu Valley, said NSU’s general secretary Deepak Bhattarai.

“The incumbent government has not been able to carry out activities in favor of the people,” he added.