Petrol price in Delhi on Saturday crossed the Rs 80-mark a litre for the first time, while in the financial hub of Mumbai, it is inching closer to Rs 90 a litre. The fuel prices are rising amid surging crude oil prices and falling rupee value. The petrol price in Delhi was hiked by 39 paise to Rs 80.38 per litre, while in Mumbai it was hiked by 38 paise to Rs 87.77 a litre. Diesel prices in Delhi and Mumbai were Rs 76.98 and Rs 72.51 per litre respectively.
Fuel prices on Friday saw the steepest daily hike of about 50 paise in over 14 months since the daily revision of prices began instead of fortnightly revisions. Even as fuel prices on fire, the government seems non-committal in offering any cushion as there are also worries over widening current account deficit. The RBI data for April-June quarter of FY2018-19 showed that India’s CAD widened to 2.4% of the GDP.
Earlier on Wednesday, Arun Jaitley said that international crude oil prices are volatile and have not shown any linear movement. Petrol prices have risen by almost Rs 3 a litre and diesel by almost Rs 3.5 a litre since mid-August as rupee hit record low against the US dollar.
The opposition has called for a nation-wide Bandh Monday to protest high petrol and diesel prices and to demand a cut in excise duty. The prices are steeply different in different states/cities mainly due to the taxes levied on them. Almost half of retail selling price comprises of taxes.
The central government levies Rs 19.48 per litre of excise duty on petrol and Rs 15.33 per litre on diesel. On top of this, state governments levy Value Added Tax (VAT), which is lowest at 6% in Andaman and Nicobar Islands and highest in Maharashtra at 39.12%.