Centre to help states fight diesel piracy

Written by fe Bureau | New Delhi | Updated: Jan 28 2011, 09:30am hrs
Petroleum minister S Jaipal Reddy on Thursday said the central government would provide financial assistance and technology to state governments to prevent the diversion of kerosene to adulterate diesel, but pleaded inability to use its own machinery to crack down the oil mafia. The minister's comment comes in the wake of a state-wide crackdown on the oil mafia by the Maharashtra government after the Malegaon additional district collector Yashwant Sonawane was burned alive by hooligans on Tuesday.

The minister said the government would re-introduce kerosene markers to prevent adulteration of diesel with kerosene, which is most subidised fuel.

The Centre, he said, is not in a position to crack down on the mafia on its own as the matter falls within the domain of state civil supplies and public distribution departments.

Reddy urged the state governments to adopt technologies like GPS to track the movement of kerosene consignments. We are not merely urging the states to adopt technology, we are showing a practical way out. We are providing the management and technology assistance at our cost .

Reddy rules out diesel price decontrol

Petroleum minister S Jaipal Reddy on Thursday ruled out deregulating the price of diesel now as it would not be politically and practically feasible when crude price is ruling at around $92 a barrel. It is not possible now, Reddy told reporters in the Capital.