Fuel price hike: Bring petrol under GST to arrest surge, say experts

In the past one month prices of diesel have increased by nearly Rs 4 per litre and that of petrol by Rs 3 per litre

In the past one month prices of diesel have increased by nearly Rs 4 per litre and that of petrol by Rs 3 per litre

While petrol prices have seen dramatic increase in Delhi and Mumbai, it is in the city of Parbhani that the fuel price is at the highest-level in India.

Touching a new high, in Mumbai, the prices of petrol threatened to touch Rs 90-per-litre mark at Rs 88.26 today whereas a litre of diesel is available for Rs 77.47. Petrol price has risen by Rs 3.65 a litre and diesel by Rs 4.06 per litre - the biggest increase in rates witnessed in any month since the launch of daily price revision in mid-June a year ago.

Other highest centres include Nanded where petrol was retailing at Rs 89.93 per litre and diesel Rs 77.90, and Amravati Rs 89.93 and Rs 78.84.

The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party has termed the hike in petroleum products as a "momentary difficulty" owing to an global crisis.

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Fuel prices across the country continue to rise relentlessly. Opposition parties are demanding a cut in the excise duty on petrol and diesel and bringing fuel under the ambit of GST.

Among the 29 Indian states and the union territory of Delhi, Kerala has the ninth highest sales tax and other state levies on petrol at 30.37 per cent; it is highest in Mumbai at 39.12 per cent (down from 48.98 per cent early this year). Now, three months after, the prices are Rs 84.06, and Rs 77.98. The people of Parbhani will be praying the state government steps in and announces a tax cut, even if the Centre refuses to budge.

The Congress party along with other Opposition parties called a nationwide strike across the country on Monday to protest against the rising prices of petrol and diesel and the falling value of the rupee against the USA dollar.

Mumbai has the highest Value-Added Tax of 39.12 percent on petrol, while Telangana levies the highest Value-Added Tax of 26 percent on diesel. Here is the case of petrol: from Rs 9.20 a litre it shot up to Rs 19.48 per litre for petrol. The petitioner, through her counsel A Maitri, has also alleged that fuel prices are politically controlled. Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan's statement that it was not possible to reduce the prices was 'irresponsible.' The popular support to the bandh call given by the Opposition speaks volumes of public anger and resentment, he said.

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