Fuel prices in India, yet again, have been increased on Saturday, which is 14th day in a row to witness a hike in prices of petrol and diesel. Petrol prices have been hiked by Rs 0.51 per litre in Delhi whereas the diesel rates have hiked by Rs 0.61 per litre. With the new prices coming into effect, diesel price has hit a record high taking the cumulative rise in prices for two weeks to ₹ 8.28 for petrol and ₹ 7.62 for diesel respectively. The rates have been increased across the country and vary from state to state depending on the incidence of local sales tax or VAT.
According to a notification from state oil marketing companies, customers will have to shell out ₹ 78.88 per litre for petrol in Delhi, while diesel retails at ₹ 77.67 per litre. Before the price hike, petrol and diesel retailed at ₹ 78.37 per litre and ₹ 77.06 per litre respectively in the capital city. The 14th-day increase in the fuel prices has taken diesel prices to a new high whereas the petrol price is also at a two-year high.
The 82-day freeze in rates this year was imposed in mid-March soon after the government hiked the excise duty on petrol and diesel to shore up additional finances.
Prior to the current rally, diesel rates had touched a peak of Rs 75.69 per litre in Delhi on October 16, 2018. The highest-ever petrol price hike was on October 4, 2018, when rates soared to Rs 84 a litre in Delhi. The government had also increased the excise duty on petrol and diesel by Rs 3 per litre each earlier this March. And, again the excise duty on the petroleum products was hiked in May by a record Rs 10 per litre on petrol and Rs 13 per litre on diesel. These hikes in excise duty gave the government Rs 2 lakh crore in additional tax revenues.
However, the oil companies adjusted the excise duty hikes instead of passing it on to the customers, as the retail rates fall extensively because of a decline in international oil prices to a two-decade low. Additionally, the international oil prices have rebounded and oil companies are now regulating the retail rates. In these 14 hikes, petrol price has gone up by Rs 7.62 per litre and diesel by Rs 8.28 per litre.