Published: Mon, May 14, 2018
Finance | By Claude Patterson

Petrol Price Hiked After 19 Day Pre-Karnataka Poll Hiatus

Petrol Price Hiked After 19 Day Pre-Karnataka Poll Hiatus

Companies like Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) have been told not to increase petrol and diesel prices since April 24 in the wake of Karnataka elections at high cost. With this, the price of petrol in Thiruvananthapuram is now Rs. 78.78 per litre, while that of diesel is Rs. 71.75 per litre. It may be noted that the fresh revision comes after the prices were last hiked on April 24. Indian Oil Corporation chairman Sanjiv Singh had earlier said that his firm had made a decision to "temporarily moderate" prices. In Mumbai diesel prices have crossed the landmark of Rs 70, worrying people about the possible rise in inflation rates in the country.

The National Democratic Alliance government has maintained that it has got no role in pricing since India's three government-run oil marketing companies-Indian Oil Corp. The price stood at Rs 82.65 per litre above 18 paisa compared to the previous day price of Rs 82.48 per litre. The crude oil prices fell on Monday as the U.S. has increased its drilling activity to increase output. "Even though product prices needed to be increased between Rs 2and Rs 3 per litre since then due to global developments", said an oil sector analyst asking not to be named.

Petrol and diesel prices were last revised on April 24 when they were hiked by Rs 0. Also, the rupee has weakened to Rs 67 per United States dollar from Rs 66.

Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan had last month denied reports of a directive to state oil firms to absorb at least Re 1 a litre hike by not raising prices in line with cost. It is not yet confirmed if the government had given a go-ahead to prominent oil companies who revise oil prices daily to keep it at par with global indicators.

The price of petrol has gone up by $2.9 per barrel, and that of diesel by $2.64 per barrel in the worldwide market in the same time period. More taxes on petrol and diesel, more burden on the consumer.

Officials privy to the development said the government's stiff stance on the excise duty cut could be revisited soon if global crude prices continue to move north.

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