KOCHI: As petrol and diesel prices dipped a little after a month-long surge in Kerala, the Legal Metrology Department has mobilised its squads to conduct checks at petrol pumps to ensure consumers receive fuel at the right prices. In Ernakulam, the squads were active from 5 am after the revised prices came into force from the early hours of Friday.
“We have deployed dedicated squads to ensure petrol and diesel are sold at the right prices,” said LMD deputy controller R Ram Mohan.
“Earlier, there had been instances when dealers refused to implement price reduction at the right time. Our squads will be roaming the district to check the prices at petrol bunks.” If consumers observe any variation in the fuel prices charged by dealers, they can verify it by sending SMS to a toll-free number of the petroleum company concerned. The toll-free number will be displayed at all petrol pumps. The general public can also contact LMD - on the numbers 0484-2428772 and 0484-2423180 - to lodge any complaint.
“As the prices of petrol and diesel changes every day, consumers may not be aware of the right prices. It is an offence under Section 30 of the Legal Metrology Act to overcharge on petrol and diesel. Initially, we impose fine. If the offence is repeated, we will initiate legal proceedings against the dealer,” he said.
Two squads at ISL venue
The Legal Metrology Department deployed two squads at the Jawaharlal Nehru International Stadium, the home venue for Kerala Blasters FC in the Indian Super League, to prevent traders from selling products at exorbitant rates on Friday. Strict monitoring will be in place for the rest of the season too. “For the past several years, we have been deploying squads inside and outside to prevent traders from fleecing people. Usually, it is the food and beverages sellers who overcharge,” Ram Mohan said.
Last year, LMD had booked the contractor-in-charge of the food and beverages supply at the stadium after food and soft drinks were found to have been sold for prices three-fold higher. Packed food items and soft drinks will also be checked to see if proper declaration and MRP are displayed.