Meeting of ministerial panel on fuel price hike postponed

June 15th, 2010 - 7:29 pm ICT by IANS  

Pranab Mukherjee New Delhi, June 15 (IANS) A meeting of the empowered group of ministers (eGoM) set up to decide on a upward revision of fuel prices scheduled for Friday has been postponed.
No new date for the EGoM meet has been fixed.

Sources said key UPA allies like the DMK, Trinamool Congress and the NCP are opposed to any hike in petrol and disel prices, and the government will get time to build a political consensus on the issue.

There are also concerns that a fuel price hike will stoke inflation, which has breached the double digit mark at 10.16 percent.

The eGoM, chaired by Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee, had met June 7 to consider the Kirit Parikh committee report recommending

freeing of petrol and diesel prices from government control but could not reach at a decision.

The report released in February said that transport fuel prices should be market based, instead of being subsidized heavily by the government. It also recommended a steep Rs.100 per cylinder hike in LPG rates and a Rs.6 per litre increase in kerosene prices.

The ministerial panel had noted in the last meeting that the government faced a financial burden of Rs.345,000 crore in compensating the losses incurred by the public sector oil marketing companies for selling fuel at subsidized rates between fiscal 2003-04 and 2009-10.

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