Citizens feel pinch of fuel price hikes

DIMAPUR, OCT 19 (NPN) | Publish Date: 10/19/2021 1:02:32 PM IST

While citizens are feeling the pinch of continuous hike in prices of petrol and diesel, the Central government and state government appear to be unwilling to decrease taxes on auto fuels. 

Though the state-owned oil marketing companies kept petrol and diesel prices unchanged for the second consecutive on Tuesday, the prices of two auto fuels have touched record high levels across the country. 

The prices of petrol and diesel in Dimapur stood at Rs.104.25 per litre and Rs.96.72 per litre respectively. Likewise, the petrol and diesel were retailing at record high of Rs.105.25 per litre and Rs.97.52 per litre respectively in Kohima.

With rise in fuel prices, the prices of commodities have also been shooting through the roof. A citizen, who wished not to be named, said hike in prices of petrol, diesel and LPG was having a cascading effect on all the essential commodities and making life difficult.

An office-goer, who commutes to work daily on his motorcycle, expressed despair over the rising fuel prices and said he was contemplating buying a bicycle. S Debnath said daily increase in petrol and diesel prices was making daily life more expensive than before. Debnath said his fuel expense has doubled this year alone, adding “Achhe din has come.”

Following rise in crude oil prices to a near three-year high, the retail prices of petrol and diesel, which were already high due to heavy tax rates, has become higher in the country. 

When crude prices dropped, the Centre’s excise duty was increased instead of passing on the benefits to the citizens. 

Duty relief on fuel expected
IANS adds: Consumers could expect relief from the surging price of auto fuels this festive season as the government may opt for an excise duty cut on petrol and diesel, for the first time since the outbreak of the pandemic.
By doing so, the government aims to prevent rising crude oil prices from adversely affecting the retail price of these two commonly-used products. Petrol and diesel prices have already reached historic high levels across the country and have risen on most days for past one month, burning a larger hole in consumers’ pockets.
Sources said that Rs 2-3 per litre cut in excise duty on petrol and diesel might be announced as a shield to prevent a further spike in prices of auto fuels.
The announcement may be made ahead of Diwali to sweeten the festivities for consumers who have bore the brunt of rising fuel prices. Sources said, that states are also being asked to look at VAT cut on fuel prices.

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