Flaying the increase in excise duty and road cess on petrol and diesel in the recent budget presented by the Union government, Harsh Dev Singh, JKNPP Chairman, on Sunday said that increased prices of fuel were bound to have a cascading effect on prices of all essential commodities and articles of day to day use. “With a hike in the prices of petrol and diesel by Rs. 2.50 and Rs. 2.30 respectively, the govt had generated several thousand crores of revenue for itself without any regard for the hardships it entailed for the common masses,” Singh, as per a statement, said.He said that the increase in prices having been passed on to the end consumer, the government has failed to compensate the indigent poor masses who ultimately bore the brunt of increased prices, he lamented. “With the wages failing to keep pace, the fixed income groups suffered most, he said adding further that the increased fuel prices had raised freight and carriage charges and made transportation costlier thereby leading to general price rise.” He was addressing huge public meetings in Dalsar and Nimbla villages of Ramnagar constituency. Expressing grave concern over growing unemployment, Singh regretted that the government failed to address the issue despite its loud pronouncements. In 2014, PM Modi made tall claims by announcing to create two crore Jobs per year for the educated unemployed youth. But contrarily, he deplored, the country witnessed retrenchments and loss of Jobs in private sector as well. He said that the rural and remote area youth in particular suffered most as neither the govt created Job avenues for them nor is the private sector operational in such areas.” He said that the erstwhile government even scrapped the RET policy which provided opportunity to the rural youth to seek employment at the local level in such remote and difficult area schools.He said the dis-enchantment amongst the unemployed youth was all time high and could take an ugly turn if not addressed in the right perspective. Singh called for a special recruitment as well as infrastructure development package for Jammu region.“In 2016-17 when ten thousand posts of SPOs were sanctioned by centre for J&K, they were all given to Kashmir as a measure of appeasement leaving the Jammu youth high and dry.” “Likewise, the share of Jammu region in all other sectors during saffron rule remained negligible with Jammu youth left to protest on the streets. Pointing towards the tourism potential of Jammu region, Singh alleged that that it has remained untapped due to government apathy. He called for early completion of pending works in the vicinity of Dalsar Lake besides promotion of Tarmian and Samnabhanj as tourist destinations.