Opposition mounts arms after record rise in LPG to Rs 50, petrol and diesel prices soar

New Delhi: Petrol and diesel prices were raised on Tuesday by 80 paise per liter each while LPG domestic cooking gas tariffs were raised by Rs 50 per cylinder as state oil companies put an end to an election-related hiatus of more than four and a half months in rate reviews, stoking inflationary fears.

Petrol in Delhi will now cost Rs 96.21 per liter from Rs 95.41 previously while diesel tariffs have risen from Rs 86.67 per liter to Rs 87.47, according to a price notification from fuel retailers belonging in the state.

In Mumbai, the price of petrol was raised by Rs 0.84 per liter to Rs 110.82, and diesel by Rs 0.86 to Rs 95.

Rates, which differ state by state based on the incidence of local taxes such as VAT, are expected to continue to rise over the coming days as state oil companies recoup losses by maintaining prices stalled for a record 137 days.

Simultaneously, the price of non-subsidized LPG cylinders was increased to Rs 949.50 per 14.2 kg cylinder in the nation’s capital and Mumbai, and to Rs 976 in Kolkata.

While LPG tariffs were last revised on October 6, 2021, petrol and diesel prices had been frozen since November 4 as five states including Uttar Pradesh and Punjab surrendered at the polls.

LPG prices had risen by nearly Rs 100 per cylinder between July and 6 October 2021, before critics halted the monthly tariff review.

Non-subsidized cooking gas is that which consumers buy after they have exhausted their quota of 12 bottles at a subsidized price or below the market price. However, the government does not pay any subsidy on LPG in most towns and the price of recharging that consumers, including poor women who got a free connection under the Ujjwala scheme, is the same as that of the LPG not subsidized or at market price.

This is the highest tariff ever paid by subsidized LPG users. The unsubsidized tariff had peaked at Rs 1,241 in January 2014, but at that time the government was offering up to Rs 600 per cylinder subsidy.

The direct LPG subsidy was stopped by the central government from May 2020. A small amount is paid to cooking gas users in remote areas to offset the increased freight.

Resuming fuel price increases have stoked fears of fueling inflation, which is already above the target level of 6%p.

Rajya Sabha uproar

Opposition parties were quick to attack the government over the price hike, with Congress, the TMC and left-wing parties forcing the adjournment of proceedings in the Rajya Sabha. from the country. There will now also be daily “Vikas” in gasoline and diesel prices. The only affordable things under Modi Govt are communalism and hatred. Everything else is expensive,” Upper House Opposition Leader Mallikarjun Kharge said in a tweet.

As TMC members stormed into the House shaft carrying signs on the issue, MPs from Congress, Left, Samajwadi Party and Shiv Sena stood up, some shouting slogans.

This after President M Venkaiah Naidu said he had not accepted advice given by Shaktisinh Gohil (Congress), Dola Sen (TMC), V Sivadasan, Elamaram Kareem and John Brittas (CPM) under the rule 267, requiring the setting aside of the agenda indicated to take a discussion.

Naidu said the issue can be discussed during grant applications from relevant ministries.

As opposition MPs attempted to raise the issue, Naidu rejected their appeal and called for the zero hour mentions listed.

But an implacable opposition continued to shout slogans.

Slamming the price hikes, Samajwadi party chairman Akhilesh Yadav said: “Another gift of inflation from the BJP government to the public… LPG cylinder in Lucknow is close to Rs 1,000 and in Patna above Rs 1,000! Elections over, inflation begins”.

TMC’s Saket Gokhale said that with dealer commissions and GST, a cylinder now costs Rs 1,000. hate films are exempt from tax while the hunger of the poor is taxed”.

PCN, Cong Criticize Center

In Mumbai, the CPN and Congress on Tuesday slammed the central government over the latest fuel price hike and questioned the need to raise tariffs at a time when crude oil was being imported at “very reduced” of Russia.

Petrol and diesel prices were increased by 80 paise a liter on Tuesday, while domestic cooking gas prices were raised by 50 rupees per cylinder, ending a hiatus of more than four and a half months linked to the elections in the revision of the tariffs, said sources.

“What was the need to raise the price of cooking gas when you (the Center) have already imported thousands of barrels of crude oil at deeply discounted rates from Russia,” the chief spokesman asked. NCP Maharashtra unit, Mahesh Tapase.

The price of crude oil rose to $140 a barrel following the Russian-Ukrainian war, he noted.

On the one hand, the Ministry of Petroleum is trying to justify the price hike due to the rising international crude prices and on the other hand, they have reached a “quick deal at very reduced rates”, the chief said. of the NCP, whose party shares power with the Shiv Sena and Congress in Maharashtra.

Maharashtra Congress leader Nana Patole has accused the Center of inflicting atrocities on the people as soon as the elections are over.

He was referring to Assembly polls held recently in five states – Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Manipur and Goa.

Martin E. Berry