• Petrol, diesel prices: No going back on fuel price deregulation, says Dharmendra Pradhan

    In Delhi, petrol today is retailing at Rs 82.03 per litre and diesel at Rs 73.82. Even though public oil firms have been asked to subsidise prices of petrol and diesel by Rs 1 per litre, Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Monday said the government doesn’t plan to go back to deregulation of fuel prices. “This is not going back on deregulation. Fuel prices continue to be decided on a daily basis based on factors like benchmark international rate and foreign exchange rate,” PTI reported citing him.

    The fuel prices are surging parallel to the global crude oil rates that touched four-year high of $85 per barrel, he said at The Energy Forum. The government has also talked to Saudi Oil Minister Khalid A Al-Falih and “reminded him of the June commitment of Opec to increase production by 1 million barrels per day” to help stabilise prices, he added. It seems OPEC is not following its June decision, he said. The price of petrol on Monday was raised by 21 paise a litre and diesel by 28 paise. In Delhi, petrol today is retailing at Rs 82.03 per litre and diesel at Rs 73.82.

    The oil minister further said that the decision by the government to reduce excise duty on petrol and diesel by Rs 1.50 per litre each and ask oil PSUs to absorb another Re 1 per litre was aimed at “giving relief to consumers”. The latest decision by the government related to cutting fuel prices was taken in interest of the customers, he added. On being asked about the oil PSUs being asked to subsidise fuel, the oil minister said the companies have taken the decision to “shield” consumers from high prices.

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