HYDERABAD: Manjit Sharma a marketing executive commutes nearly 26 km from his house in Kukatpally to office in Banjara Hills – a journey that takes over an hour and is now all set to become increasingly expensive.
“I spend between `8,000- 9,000 monthly on my fuel expenses. It’s a big sum for me. Four years ago when I had bought a car, fuel prices were not as high,” he says and adds that he regrets he bought a petrol car instead of a diesel one.
Since Thursday midnight, petrol costs `71.21 and diesel `56.04 per litre – a `3.96 litre hike in former and `2.37 a litre for latter.
Manjit now says, he will either use public transport or try to carpool – an option that’s not widely available in the city.
The latest hike comes after the cut in fuel prices on April 15 whre petrol prices were slashed by 80 paise a litre and diesel by `1.31 a litre. This reduction was preceded by another cut on April 1 which made petrol cheaper by 49 paise per litre and diesel by `1.21 per litre.
Surge in global oil rates coupled with depreciated value of rupee has caused the prices of petrol to be cut 10 times since last August 2014 and diesel prices have gone down six times.
“The fuel price hikes have become an absolute nightmare and what’s even worse is that they happen at such an alarming regularity. Unfortunately, our salaries are not going up but fuel prices are constantly increasing,” rues Shivam Sharma, who works at an MNC.
Though the fuel prices are determined by the international market, rising prices have also fanned another problem that the economy is grappling – rising prices of essential commodities. “Now that diesel prices have also shot up, it will also affect freight charges. I’m afraid prices of vegetables will sky rocket,” rues homemaker P Sai. She adds that the rising expenditure might mean her family of five might have to drop their plan for vacation.
While the hike is sure to burn people’s saving, like Sai, most people don’t have any idea how they will brace up for the additional expenditure.
A Junaid, a manager with a retail firm says he travels 75km daily and the petrol price rise is likely to shoot his fuel expenses by `7,000. “Of course this is going to upset my budget, but there isn’t much I can do about it. I will have to manage somehow,” he says.
Social media users may be cornering the BJP Government, and Prime Minister Narendra Modi in turn, may have put the onus on the UPA government, the fact remains that the party for the Indian consumers of petrol and diesel is over.