Oil companies look to hike petrol, diesel prices immediately after Karnataka polls: Report

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Updated: May 14, 2018 12:14 PM

Oil companies are looking to hike petrol and diesel prices, after a long freeze, immediately after the Karnataka polls.

Oil companies looks to hike petrol, diesel prices immediately after Karnataka polls: ReportOil companies are looking to hike petrol and diesel prices, after a long freeze, immediately after the Karnataka polls. (Image: Reuters)

Oil companies are looking to hike petrol and diesel prices, after a long freeze, immediately after the Karnataka polls. ET Now on Friday reported quoting sources that petrol and diesel prices are likely to go up by Rs 1.5 a litre from May 13 — just the next day of Karnataka polls. OMCs are looking at a staggering hike of Rs 3 a litre but fear public outrage if price hike is too steep, the new channel reported.

The oil companies have not hiked fuel prices since April 24. However, on Thursday, Indian Oil Corporation chief denied the link between price hike freeze and Karnataka polls. IOC Sanjiv Singh said the decision of oil PSUs to not hike petrol and diesel prices was aimed at stabilising them and it “incidentally” coincided with Karnataka elections.

The fuel prices were frozen even as the crude oil prices kept rallying, triggered by US President Donald Trump’s decision to walk out on Iran nuclear deal. The petrol and diesel prices were kept frozen at Rs 74.63 and Rs 65.93 respectively in Delhi.

Even as Sanjiv Singh said that the surge in international oil products market was not supported by fundamentals and passing them on to consumers would have created unnecessary panic, some experts disagreed. PTI quoting an oil sector analyst reported that if the dynamic daily price revision practice was followed in letter and spirit, petrol and diesel prices should have been increased by 50-60 paisa a litre in last one week.

Petrol, diesel price up after 19-day gap as Karnataka election ends; check rates in your city

The government had in June 2010 freed petrol price from its control and the diesel rates were deregulated in October 2014. Prices have since then moved more or less in tandem with international rates barring a few exceptions like the period before a crucial election.

The prices at petrol pumps of state-owned fuel retailers like Indian Oil Corp (IOC) were cut by 1-3 paisa every day in the first fortnight of December 2017 before Gujarat went to polls. They started moving up immediately after polling for assembly elections in Gujarat concluded on December 14, leading to speculation that government may have asked oil companies to hold on to the prices, the news agency reported last week.

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