Public fumes, as petrol prices hiked again (Roundup)September 15th, 2011 - 8:36 pm ICT by IANS
New Delhi, Sep 15 (IANS) Petrol prices were hiked for the 10th time since June 2010, by a little over Rs.3 a litre from Friday, as India’s oil retailers sought to pass most of the burden of the falling value of the rupee and high crude prices on to consumers.
Petrol will now cost Rs.66.84 in the national capital, Rs.71.76 in Mumbai, Rs.70.64 in Chennai and Rs.71.15 in Kolkata. Prices of diesel and other transport and cooking fuels, that are still controlled by the government unlike gasoline, were left untouched.
The latest hike of Rs.3.14 per litre — the 10th time since June 2010 — comes over and above a steep upward revision of Rs.5 a litre in May.
“This is really crazy. The government is punishing the middle class. Look at the prices of fruits and vegetables. Then milk, then electricity and now petrol. Every thing will shoot up again,” said R.S. Sharma, an accountant with a private firm.
The latest data on India’s wholesale price index placed the annual rate of inflation at 9.78 percent, which Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee described as “bad news” and hoped it would come back to the government’s comfort zone soon.
An official in the petroleum ministry confirmed the decision taken by state-run Indian Oil Corp, Bharat Petroleum Corp Ltd and Hindustan Petroleum Corp Ltd, and added that they had lost Rs.2,450 crore thus far this fiscal by selling petrol below cost.
Petrol prices were freed from government control in June last year, thus allowing the oil retailers to revise prices as the situation demanded. Officials, nevertheless, said the government was kept in the loop.
The hike comes against the backdrop of the Rupee’s value falling below 48 to a dollar for the first time in almost two years, while global crude prices — especially the Indian basket — hovered around $111 a barrel in the first fortnight of September.
Officials said diesel was still being sold at a subsidy of Rs.6.05 a litre, kerosene subsidised Rs.23.25 per litre and cooking gas Rs.267 for a 14.2-kg cylinder. On these three oil products, the losses are estimated at Rs.65,000 crore so far this fiscal.
The prices of these three fuels were raised by the government in June by Rs.3 per litre, Rs.2 per litre and Rs.50 per cylinder, respectively.
In June last year, following de-control of petrol prices, oil firms had increased prices by Rs.3 per litre. Then, another substantial price rise took place in December 2010 and January this year, when companies had hiked the price by around Rs.3 per litre.
- Opposition slams government over petrol price hike - Sep 15, 2011
- Fresh petrol price hike of Rs.1.80 per litre - Nov 03, 2011
- Petrol to be cheaper by Rs.2.46 a litre (Second Lead) - Jun 28, 2012
- Fuel prices revised countrywide - Jul 25, 2012
- Government hikes diesel price by Rs.five a litre (Second lead) - Sep 13, 2012
- Petrol prices to be hiked by 70 paise from midnight (Second Lead) - Jul 23, 2012
- Ministerial panel to decide diesel price hike Dec 22 - Dec 15, 2010
- No deregulation of diesel, kerosene, LPG prices - Aug 21, 2012
- Petrol prices lowered by Rs.1.85 per litre - Nov 15, 2011
- Petrol price cut by Rs.2 a litre (Second Lead) - Jun 02, 2012
- Diesel price hiked by Rs 5, opposition slams 'anti-people' move (Roundup) - Sep 14, 2012
- Ministerial panel to decide on diesel price hike next week (Lead) - Dec 15, 2010
- No plan to hike diesel, LPG, kerosene prices: Reddy - May 28, 2012
- Government intervention if crude oil prices turn volatile: Deora - Jul 02, 2010
- Decision on fuel prices deferred, CCPA meet postponed - Sep 11, 2012
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,