Price natural gas on cost basis: Jayalalithaa

Chennai, July 1 (IANS) Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa Monday demanded that the natural gas produced in the country be priced taking into account the production cost alone and be denominated in Indian rupees.

Criticising the centre’s decision to hike the gas prices from next April, Jayalalithaa said the price of natural gas produced entirely in India should not be pegged to its international price that is denominated in dollars.

“Post the 2014 general elections, the AIADMK will take steps to redraw the central government’s policies as the party under my leadership will be in a position to chart the government policies,” Jayalalithaa said in a statement issued here.

She said the price of natural gas produced in the country should be set taking into account its production cost alone. Only then could it be supplied at a lower cost to gas-based fertiliser and power generation companies, Jayalalithaa added.

She said the Congress-led central government has the people’s mandate only till May 2014 and it has no right to fix the gas prices effective from April 2014.

Jayalalithaa said the natural resources like natural gas belong to the people and are not anybody’s private property.

Faulting the current pricing policy of petroleum products, Jayalalithaa said these should be priced taking into account the cost of imported and domestic crude and the expenditure on refining.

Jayalalithaa said the centre, after suffering from policy paralysis, is now on a policy overdose which is detrimental to the common people but enables big industries to make profits.

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