Government-owned oil firms continued to jack up fuel prices for the seventh straight day on Sunday, pushing petrol and diesel prices to levels not seen before.
In Delhi, petrol was sold at Rs 76.24 a litre — an increase of 33 paise — the highest since the daily price revision came into force in mid-June 2017. Diesel price rose 26 paise to Rs 67.57 a litre, according to price notification issued by oil firms.
At Rs 84.07, Mumbai is the worst-hit in terms of petrol prices owing to higher local taxes. Kolkata and Chennai are relatively better off as prices have not yet breached the Rs 80-mark. Prices in these cities stand at Rs 78.91 and Rs 79.13 per litre, respectively.
Goa capital Panjim is the cheapest city in India for fuel where petrol costs only Rs 70.26. Port Blair is the cheapest place for diesel, at Rs 63.35 a litre.Rates vary from state to state depending on local sales tax.
Notably, oil companies had refrained from increasing fuel prices for as many as 19 days in the run-up to the Karnataka elections, absorbing the huge burden arising from an increase in international crude prices. According to rough estimates, oil firms may have lost about Rs 500 crore a day due to the spike in international rates as well as the fall in rupee against the dollar.
However, oil firms started easing the pressure on them soon after the polls ended, resulting in a notable uptick in prices.
With Brent, the benchmark international rate for petrol, remaining in the high range of $84.97 a barrel, there is immense pressure on the government to cut excise duty so that the retail price will come down.