Petrol, diesel touch all time highs as oil companies hike rates

Petrol `80, diesel `70.96 in Srinagar

PTI
New Delhi, Publish Date: May 20 2018 11:21PM | Updated Date: May 20 2018 11:21PM
Petrol, diesel touch all time highs as oil companies hike ratesFile Photo

Petrol price Sunday touched a record high of Rs 80 per litre and diesel climbed to its highest ever level of Rs 70.96 as the oil PSUs passed on four weeks of relentless rise in international oil prices to consumers.

Petrol price today increased by 33 paisa a litre -- the highest since the daily price revision came into force in mid-June 2017, and diesel by 26 paisa, according to price notification issued by state-owned oil firms.

With this increase, petrol has touched an all time-high, breaching the previous high of Rs 76.06 touched in Delhi on September 14, 2013. Diesel rates are also at the all-time high level.

Rates vary from state to state depending on the incidence of local sales tax or VAT. Prices in Delhi are the cheapest in all metros and most state capitals.

This is the seventh straight day of price increase since oil PSUs on May 14 resumed daily price revision after a 19-day pre-Karnataka poll hiatus. In all, petrol price has been raised by Rs 1.61 a litre and diesel by 1.64 in last one week.

In India, petrol is the costliest in Mumbai where high local taxes has led a price of Rs 84.07 per litre. Petrol has breached Rs 80 mark in Bhopal (Rs 81.83 a litre), Patna (Rs 81.73), Hyderabad (Rs 80.76) and Srinagar (Rs 80.35), according to the price notification.

Diesel is the costliest in Hyderabad were it is priced at Rs 73.45 a litre due to high local taxes. It is priced at Rs 73.34 in Trivandrum. Other cities where diesel rates have crossed Rs 70 mark are  Raipur (Rs 72.96 a litre), Gandhinagar (Rs 72.63), Bhubhaneswar (Rs 72.43), Patna (Rs 72.24), Jaipur (Rs 71.97), Ranchi (Rs 71.35), Bhopal (Rs 71.12) and Srinagar (Rs 70.96).

On Friday, Economic Affairs Secretary Subhash Chandra Garg refused to say if the government will cut excise duty on auto fuel to ease the burden on consumers.

The government is watching the situation developing from oil prices hitting USD 80 a barrel -- the highest since November 2014, and adequate steps will be taken, is all he said said without elaborating.

Asked if the government would cut excise duty on petrol and diesel, he had stated that he has nothing to say on that front. "Just watch."

The BJP-led government had raised excise duty nine times -- totalling Rs 11.77 per litre on petrol and Rs 13.47 on diesel -- between November 2014 and January 2016 to shore up finances as global oil prices fell, but then cut the tax just once in October last year by Rs 2 a litre.  

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