PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari on Monday rejected the recent hike in prices of petroleum products, saying that the federal government does not care for poor people’s problems. “The government is, in fact, slashing its expenditure by abdicating its responsibility to protect the most vulnerable, and its policy to raise revenue by unleashing ‘petrol bombs’ and ramping up indirect taxation on a country already reeling from three years of economic malice and incompetence,” the PPP chairman said in a statement. He said in just a month’s time, Rs 10 have been increased on a litre of petrol. “This selected government’s incompetence is holding back Pakistan from progressing; Prime Minister Imran Khan does not know anything except lying and political victimisation,” he said. The PPP chairman asked the prime minister to take back the decision to increase petrol prices and “have mercy on the people.” “PPP had kept petrol prices stable despite facing harsh conditions,” he went on to say. “The selected prime minister is unable to run the country – he knows nothing but lies and political victimisation,” he added. Addressing the prime minister, he said, “Khan Sahib, have mercy on the people and reverse the increase in petrol prices.” He also condemned the increase in taxes and pointed out that the previous PPP governments had kept petrol prices stable even in the most challenging circumstances. It is worth mentioning here that the government had raised the price of petrol by Rs1.71 per litre for August. The decision was made as per the recommendation of the Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (OGRA). Petrol now costs Rs119.80 per litre. It was decided that the rate of high-speed diesel be kept constant, as a hike in this commodity impacts the “common man and farmers more”. Thus, diesel continued to be priced at Rs117.53 per litre. Similarly, no change was made to the price of light diesel oil. Meanwhile, Kerosene, starting August 1, would cost Rs0.35 dearer, at Rs85.75 per litre.