Rude shock for common man as petroleum products hiked

June 4th, 2008 - 5:03 pm ICT by IANS  


New Delhi, June 4 (IANS) The ten percent rise in petroleum products Wednesday has come as a rude shock for the man on the street, who feels cheated and stunned by the rise which one considers more than what was expected. Be it an auto-rickshaw driver, a shopkeeper, a housewife, a student or a government official, all have told IANS in unison that although they were expecting a hike in the fuel prices and cooking gas, the 10 percent rise was too much to handle for the common man.

Petrol and diesel will now respectively cost Rs.5 and Rs.3 per litre more to the consumers, whereas LPG cylinder will cost Rs.50 more.

Normal unleaded petrol is now expected to cost Rs.50.52 per litre in the national capital and Rs.55.51 in Mumbai, while diesel is expected to retail at Rs.34.76 and Rs.39.08, respectively, in the two metros.

“I have to now juggle my entire monthly budget. The hike is difficult to handle, especially for a middle-class housewife. I have to cut down on the purchase of essential food items to maintain my fixed kitchen budget,” said Minu Agarwal, a homemaker from Munirka.

Pravin Singh, a government official, said the hike was too much for any commoner.

“With the rise in fuel prices, the price of all essential commodities will automatically increase. The UPA government has completely failed to understand the needs of the common man. They are simply making our lives miserable,” rued Singh.

The shopkeepers across the capital city are apprehensive that the rise will have an immediate effect on their business.

“Prices of all essential products will immediately shoot up. This is bound to affect our business,” said Manoj Bhatt, who has a small shop in a city mall.

Salil Sharma, a student, said because of the impending hike in petrol price, he had filled up fuel in his motorbike in the morning.

“I knew that there would be a hike in the price of fuel. And as expected, petrol price has increased by Rs.5 per litre. That’s why I re-fuelled my bike first thing in the morning. Had I waited a little longer, I would have got stuck in the snaking queues bound to be there at all the petrol pump stations,” Sharma told IANS.

For Sania Singh, a teacher, her plans of buying a car have to now wait a little longer.

“I have been planning to buy a car for quite some time now. Haggling with the auto drivers everyday while commuting to and from office is both taxing and time-consuming, and it ultimately costs a lot. A car would have solved the problem.

“But with the hike in fuel price, I think I will wait for a while before going ahead,” she said.

Sounding a wee bit more positive than most others, Ramesh Verma, a marketing executive said that he will feel the pinch of the fuel hike now, but ultimately things will become normal.

“For the first few days, maybe a fortnight or so, every time I go to the petrol pump to re-fuel my car, I am bound to feel the pinch,” Verma said.

“But then after some time, things will settle down and everything will seem normal,” he added.

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