The fuel prices continued its northward march and set fresh highs on Tuesday morning, with the price of Petrol in New Delhi is Rs. 80.87, in Kolkata for Rs. 83.75, in Mumbai for Rs. 88.26, and in Chennai for Rs. 84.07, according to the largest fuel retailer, Indian Oil Corporation (IOC). Since 1 August, petrol prices have risen by Rs 4.56 per litre and diesel prices have risen by Rs 5.15 a litre in the national capital, on the back of a depreciating Rupee against the dollar and an increase in global fuel prices. While a cut in excise duty that the central government levies will impact fiscal deficit, states like Bihar, Kerala, and Punjab are not in a position to cut sales tax (or VAT), the official, who wished not to be identified, said. "Bharat bandh evokes good response in Chhattisgarh Congress" Bharat Bandh against rising fuel prices evoked a good response in the BJP-ruled Chhattisgarh where many business establishments remained shut in major cities including Raipur and buses stayed off roads. The Centre now levies a total excise duty of Rs 19.48 per litre of petrol and Rs 15.33 per litre on diesel.
However, the Bahujan Samaj Party and the Samajwadi Party did not join the Opposition protests in Delhi. Train services were hit in Odisha during the "Bharat bandh" call.
With the title "Truth of hike in petroleum prices", the ruling party with the help of bar diagrams explained that the percentage increase in the rise of fuels in 2018 is less than the increase during the previous two terms.
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Amid the Opposition-sponsored nation-wide shutdown, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Monday released a couple of graphics describing the percentage hike in both petrol and diesel prices. "Today he is the Prime Minister and says nothing". Since mid-August, petrol price has risen by Rs 3.24 a litre and diesel by Rs 3.74 per litre as rupee hit record low against the U.S. dollar, making imports costlier.
The BJP contested the charges and claims made by the Congress and other Opposition parties. Union Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan also attributed the hike in fuel prices mainly to rupee depreciation. Rajasthan and Andhra Pradesh has already cut down state taxes on both fuels.
Meanwhile, the BJP said the hike in fuel prices was a "momentary difficulty" and claimed the shutdown was a complete failure. Because the price is built up by excessive taxes on petrol and diesel.