Petrol prices are aflame in the country, touching astronomical levels over the past few days. Petrol retailed at Rs 80.87 a litre in Delhi, Rs 83.75 in Kolkata, Rs 88.26 in Mumbai, and Rs 84.07 in Chennai on Tuesday, according to Indian Oil Corporation (IOC), the country's largest fuel retailer. Diesel was sold at Rs 72.97 per litre in Delhi, Rs 75.82 in Kolkata, Rs 77.47 in Mumbai and Rs 77.15 in Chennai.
However, the retail price of petrol is the highest in Maharashtra's Parbhani district. The price of the motor spirit touched the psychological barrier of Rs 90 there, with petrol retailing at Rs 90.11 on Wednesday while diesel is being sold at Rs 78.06. Prices have skyrocketed in Parbhani since the sharp hike in fuel rates. Earlier, on Monday, the price of petrol shot up to Rs 89.97 -- the highest in India, an official told IANS.
One of the reasons for the high prices of petrol and diesel in Parbhani is the lack of an oil depot in that district. The closest depot is in Manmad which is some 350 km away from Parbhani. To get to Parbhani from Manmad, dealers have to drive through five toll plazas and toll costs around Rs 950.
"The toll fares are factored in the fuel rates and petrol and diesel rates differ in areas in-and-around the district," Amol Bhedsurkar, President, Parbhani District Petrol and Diesel Association told Firstpost. Also, the Maharashtra government levies a cess of Rs 9 and Re 1 on petrol and diesel respectively, apart from a 25 percent value added tax (VAT) on petrol and 21 percent on diesel.
The Parbhani District Petrol Dealers Association (PDPDA) President Sanjay Deshmukh said that it is time for the state government to offer a cut in fuel prices, similar to what the Rajasthan and Andhra Pradesh governments have done.
Though a few states have announced a reduction in VAT for fuel thus bringing down prices, Maharashtra is yet to do so.
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee announced a Re 1 cut in fuel prices on Tuesday. On Monday, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu announced a cut in petrol and diesel price by Rs 2 each.
Earlier, Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje announced a four percent reduction in VAT on petrol and diesel on Sunday, which will reduce fuel prices by Rs 2.5 per litre in the state. VAT on petrol will be reduced from 30 to 26 percent and on diesel from 22 to 18 percent, Raje announced. The decision will cost the exchequer Rs 2,000 crore, but will provide the people of that state a relief of Rs 2.5 per litre on petrol and diesel.
(Data support from Kishor Kadam)
Updated Date: Sep 12, 2018 18:58 PM