• Fuel prices up: Piped gas for cooking now Rs 39.5, CNG Rs 66

    The price of compressed natural gas (CNG) has seen an unprecedented hike of over Rs 18 in less than a year in Mumbai, with a fresh hike of Rs 2.50 per kg from Sunday morning. The rate of piped gas has also gone up by Rs 1.50 a unit.
    The hikes have raised fears of a possible auto-taxi fare hike in the region this year, and an increase in school bus fees besides hiked fares for transportation in private buses running on CNG.

    The CNG hike will be a huge burden for over 8 lakh consumers, including over 3 lakhcar users who opted for the green fuel as it was cheaper than petrol and diesel besides being environment-friendly. This is the fifth hike since October and it has gone up by Rs 14 since October.
    The revised prices of CNG — inclusive of all taxes — in Mumbai metropolitan region from Sunday morning will be Rs 66 per kg while rate of piped gas will rise to Rs 39.50 per unit.

    Mumbai Taximen’s Union and Mumbai Rickshawmen’s Union have already petitioned the state transport department for hikes of Rs 5 and Rs 2 for taxi and autos respectively. “The fuel cost taken into account while calculating the fare hike announced in 2021 was less than Rs 50 per kg of CNG. Now this has gone up to Rs 66 which is too high,” said Thampy Kurien of the rickshaw union.
    However, one of the unions demanded that the price be rolled back so that there is no fare hike burden on consumers. Mumbai Autorickshawmen’s Union leader Shashank Rao said that the government should avoid a fare hike and roll back CNG hikes. “Citizens will not tolerate another fare hike and it will not be proper to demand for one. So we are writing to chief minister Uddhav Thackeray and transport minister Anil Parab to intervene,” he said.
    Drivers of cabs like Ola or Uber are also seeking a hike in fares as many have switched to CNG from diesel.
    A spokesperson from Mahanagar Gas Limited (MGL) said: “In order to meet the shortfall in domestic gas allocation, MGL is sourcing additional natural gas to cater to the rising demand by consumers. On account of substantial increase in the market price of natural gas, we have to increase prices of CNG and piped gas.”
    She further said that even after the price revision, CNG offers attractive savings of about 59% and 30% as compared to petrol and diesel respectively at current prices in Mumbai. The comparative price of petrol is Rs 109.98 a litre and diesel is retailing at Rs 94.14 per litre.

    “Also, domestic piped gas offers 22% saving compared to current price of domestic LPG cylinder that costs nearly Rs 900 a cylinder in Mumbai. Piped gas is safe, reliable and environment friendly,” she added.

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