Petrol price continues to rise, up 14 paisa a litre

Fuel prices up again

Petrol, diesel price hike: Centre will not cut excise duty on fuels; no immediate relief for consumers

"There should be revision of diesel and petrol prices quarterly, uniform diesel price across India". The calls for cut in excise duty to ease burden on consumers have started coming from various quarters now.

According to the data on IndianOil Corp's website, petrol price in New Delhi was the highest in almost five years and became dearer by 10 paise from Sunday's cost of Rs 74.40 per litre.

The oil ministry, had earlier this year, sought a reduction in the excise duty on petrol and diesel to cushion the impact of rising global crude oil prices but Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, in his Budget, presented on 1 February, ignored those calls.

"Excise duty cut would be a political call, but is not advisable if we have to stick to the fiscal deficit glide path outlined in Budget", a PTI report quoted a ministry official as saying. The finance ministry official disclosed that there would be a loss of Rs.13,000 crore if Re.one is reduced on excise duty. The official said states should cut Value-Added Tax on fuel to ease the burden on the consumer. "Fiscal considerations are far higher than one or two rupee price impact on consumers", said officials.

The central government feels that the States should come forward and reduce its VAT or sales tax on fuel.

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Diesel prices in other state capitals: The product in Bangalore was available at Rs 67.05 per litre, Bhopal at Rs 69.38 per litre, Bhubaneswar at Rs 70.75 per litre, Chandigarh at Rs 64.01 per litre, Dehradun at Rs 66.22 per litre, Gandhinagar at Rs 70.81 per litre, Hyderabad at Rs 71.63 per litre, Jaipur at Rs 70.25 per litre, Lucknow at Rs 66.05 per litre, Patna at Rs 70.57 per litre, Raipur at Rs 71.20 per litre and Srinagar at Rs 69.24 per litre.

The government's hopes hinge largely on geopolitical tension to ease while shale oil in the United States to help oil prices ease.

State-owned oil companies - Indian Oil Corporation, Bharat Petroleum Corporation and Hindustan Petroleum Corporation - in June last year dumped the 15-year old practice of revising rates on the 1st and 16th of every month.

Consumers continue to suffer as petrol and diesel prices were hiked for the sixth consecutive day across Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata and Chennai on Tuesday. The hike, necessitated due to firming global oil prices, comes on the back of a 32 paise increase in rates of petrol effected over the last two days. However, the same can not be said in respect of diesel prices since it will directly impact the prices of essential commodities. Petrol and diesel prices in India are linked to their rates in trading hubs and not directly to crude, which is a component of the overall pricing.

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