Petrol in Delhi Crosses Rs 80 Mark, Oppn Unites for Bharat Bandh

Petrol in Delhi Crosses Rs 80 Mark, Oppn Unites for Bharat Bandh

Petrol in Delhi Crosses Rs 80 Mark, Oppn Unites for Bharat Bandh

Andhra Pradesh chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu on Monday announced a reduction in value-added tax (VAT) on the price of petrol and diesel by Rs 2 per litre in the state amid a countrywide shutdown by Congress-led opposition to protest the spiralling fuel prices.

Since 1 August, petrol prices have risen by Rs 4.42 per litre and diesel prices have risen by Rs 5.01 a litre in the national capital, on the back of a depreciating rupee against the dollar and an increase in global fuel prices. The central government now levies a total excise duty of Rs 19.48 per litre of petrol and Rs 15.33 per litre on diesel. Because the price is built up by excessive taxes on petrol and diesel.

Since mid-August, petrol price has risen by Rs 3.42 a litre and diesel by Rs 3.84 per litre as rupee hit record low against the USA dollar, making imports costlier. At least 20 other political parties, including the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) and the Samajwadi Party (SP), have extended their support to Congress against the fuel price hike. The increase pushed the petrol price in Delhi to Rs 80.50 per litre.

Implication wise, the rise in diesel prices is expected to flare up the inflationary pressure as the fuel is primarily used to transport the majority of goods including agriculture products. Two of them, rising price of crude oil and depreciation in the value of the rupee against the USA dollar, are beyond the control of government. "Midway change in price of fuel derails the economics of transporters", said Mukesh Dave, executive president of Akhil Gujarat Truck Transport Association.

However, the central government is yet to announce any cut on the excise duty levied on petrol and diesel. Bharat Bandh was called for today from 9 AM to 3 PM to bring petrol and diesel under the Goods and Services Tax (GST), which, the grand-old party said, would decrease the price by Rs 15-18.

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