Petrol down by Rs 4.37/litre, Maharashtra to cut diesel rates: CM

Fuel Prices Center Finally Responds To Common Man's Plight

Petrol prices in Delhi went up by 18 paise today to end up at Rs 81.68 per litre and diesel prices rose to Rs 73.24 per litre after an increase of 29 paise.

Previous year in October, when the oil prices were rising, the Centre cut excise duty by Rs 2.

Mumbai: A day after slashing Value-Added Tax on petrol in Maharashtra, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on Friday announced a reduction in diesel prices by Rs.4.06 per litre. The centre levies a total of Rs 19.48 per litre of excise duty on petrol and Rs 15.33 per litre on diesel. Non-BJP ruled states like Kerala, Karnataka and West Bengal have refused to cut taxes.

The new fuel prices would be effective in the state from this midnight, an official spokesman said.

BJP chief Amit Shah was closeted with three senior ministers on Wednesday and discussed the need for cutting fuel prices, sources said. But growing public anger over surging fuel prices has caught the attention of the government. The move to bring down domestic fuel prices came amid global crude oil rates soaring to 2014 highs in the past few days.

The Finance Minister said, however, that the higher oil prices were not the only factor that prompted the decision: India was also getting hit by higher US interest rates, although he added that only the country's current account deficit was swelling under the twin pressure of prices and rates, while the national fiscal deficit was enjoying the positive effects from direct tax collection rates.

"For the reduction of Rs.1.56/litre in diesel prices, now don't squander Rs 1,500 crores in publicity, or people will be forced to shell out extra Rs. 10 to recover that", Munde added sarcastically.

Mr Jaitley expressed hope that the states will reduce state tax on fuel along with centre's move. Government taxes are estimated to account for almost 40% of retail prices of petrol and diesel.

Apart from this, the oil marketing companies in India have been asked to bear the remaining burden of Re 1 per every litre and with this, the customers will get a relief of Rs 2.50 per litre on both petrol and diesel.

The Economic Survey had identified rising oil prices as one of the biggest risks to the Indian economy stating that it would crimp real incomes and spending.

India's current account deficit in the June 2018 quarter rose to a four-year high of 2.4% of GDP, or $14.3 billion, which has put further pressure on an already weakening rupee.

On OMCs absorbing Re 1, he said they would adjust it over present and future prices.

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