High oil prices may spoil party for BJP in 2019

28 May, 2018, 11:22 | Author: Manuel Hopkins
  • Time to get 'em working

In this list of the top 10 consumers, India has one of the costliest prices - $1.19 a litre for petrol and $1.05 a litre for diesel.

Prices in Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai have already reached record levels, while in Kolkata, it is inching close to a four-year-high level.

Further, in Kolkata, petrol price, now inching towards a four year high, was sold at Rs 80.61, against 80.47 per litre on Friday.

Oil companies increased the fuel prices for the 15th consecutive day on Monday, even as worldwide prices of crude oil have reduced in the last three days. Diesel prices on the other hand, were hiked by 44 paise to Rs 73.64 per litre in Mumbai. We have advocated for bringing petroleum products under Goods and Services Tax (GST). "Public perceptions change fast and if the current price rise continues, it would be hard to tone down public anger and get their favour in the form of votes again", said an official of oil marketing firm not willing to be named. A similar tax was considered in 2008 when oil prices were on the rise but the idea was dropped after stiff opposition from private sector firms like Cairn India. In a series of tweets, the former finance minister said the bonanza to central government is Rs 25 on every litre of petrol and this money rightfully belongs to the average consumer.

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The Union Government has been drawing flak from all quarters for high fuel prices.

The government continues to increase oil prices on both occasions when crude prices go up as well as go down, appropriating the amount of differences that accrue due to fall in crude prices.

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) president and Rajya Sabha MP, Amit Shah, on last Tuesday, assured that the government will come up with a solution within two to three days. This meant that despite high global oil prices, UPA could manage to keep fuel price at relatively manageable levels through a mix of higher subsidies and lower duty.

Petrol and diesel prices continued to touch fresh peaks for the 15th consecutive day, with petrol being sold at Rs 78. "We are in discussions with them", said a second government official.

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