No end in sight as fuel price surges for 13th day

Reuters image

Reuters image

There was a 19-day freeze in revising rates before Karnataka went to polls, and since the time the hiatus ended on May 14, rates have gone up by on every single day - petrol price was today raised by 15 paisa a litre and diesel by 12 paisa, according to a price notification issued by oil marketing companies.

Chennai also entered the Rs 73 per litre club after Mumbai, as the price was hiked by 15 paise available at Rs 73.18 per litre on Monday, compared to previous price of Rs 73.03 per litre. If the government includes fuels under the GST and applies the highest tax slab of 28 per cent, the price of petrol would come down by Rs 26.9 and diesel by Rs 15.4.

The incessant hike in petrol and diesel prices has been mostly due to rise in crude oil prices and the high taxes - excise duty and VAT - levied on fuels. It is being sold at Rs 79.71 in Bangalore, Rs 82.62 in Trivandrum, Rs 82.80 in Srinagar, Rs 80.10 in Jammu, Rs 78.58 in Shimla, Rs 83.89 in Patna, Rs 78.82 in Lucknow, Rs 81.22 in jaipur, 83.08 in Hyderabad, Rs 80.66 in Guwahati, 81.45 in Gangtok, Rs 75.43 in Chandigarh and Rs 84.06 in Bhopal. Some are even suggesting to bring petrol and diesel under the GST, hoping that it would reduce taxes -which is now close to 50 per cent- by half.

Worldwide crude oil prices had risen in the period, while the rupee fell against the United States dollar - both factors make the fuels costlier.

In April, Pradhan had said the Centre and the state governments have been considering bringing the petroleum products under the ambit of Goods and Services Tax. The most expensive is the Netherlands, where drivers pay £1.47 per litre of petrol.

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As the Centre has come under fire over fuel price hike, Union Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister Dharmendra Pradhan earlier assured the public that the government will soon take out a solution to tackle the situation.

He also said that the weakening of the Indian rupee against the USA dollar was causing the fuel price hike.

It comes as prices at the pumps have already surged to a three-year high.

Petrol and diesel prices were hiked for straight 14th day on Sunday pushing prices of fuel to a new record high.

This will push up the deficit of Centre, unlike states, it added.

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