As petrol, diesel prices hit historic highs on Sunday, government is mulling over a plan to soften the impact of the price rise through various alternatives. Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan raised hopes of the government cutting excise duty to cool down the impact of surging oil prices. The Centre is sensitive towards the rising fuel prices and various alternatives are being explored, Pradhan said on Sunday. The government is also talking to various countries and expects the oil prices to start cooling down soon. Talking to CNBC TV18, Narendra Taneja, BJP Spokesperson said that the current situation has become tough because oil prices are rising while tax architecture has remained the same. However, even if the government comes up with a Rs 1 excise duty cut on diesel, it would not make much of lasting difference, he maintained
The excise duty route was taken in the interest of the nation and the money collected was used for the benefit of the people, he said further. The petrol is selling at retailers in Delhi at Rs 76.87 per litre in Delhi, Rs 79.53 in Kolkata, Rs 84.70 in Mumbai, and Rs 79.79 in Chennai today. The diesel is selling at retailers in Delhi at Rs 68.08 per litre in Delhi, Rs 70.63 in Kolkata, Rs 72.48 in Mumbai, and Rs 71.87 in Chennai today.
Talking to ANI, oil minister, said the government has “taken the responsibility to reduce the net impact by Rs 2.50 and Rs 2.35”, hinting at some cuts in duties or commissions.
“Just as the central government has taken responsibility, states should also take responsibility to reduce VAT, which directly goes into their account. The VAT on fuel goes up to 40%. States are the biggest beneficiaries of all collections. Even if they reduce VAT by 5%, consumers will benefit,” he added.
The government is mulling over a plan in the backdrop of petrol price touching a record high of Rs 76.24 per litre, rising 33 paise in Delhi. It is the steepest increase since the retailers adopted the system of daily price revision in June, 2017. The price of Diesel rose by 26 paise to Rs 67.57 a litre, which is an all-time high.