NCP, Congress criticise Centre for fuel price hike

The parties questioned the need for increasing the rates at a time when crude oil was imported at “highly discounted rates from Russia

Mumbai: The NCP and Congress hit out at the central government on Tuesday over the latest fuel price hike, and questioned the need for increasing the rates at a time when crude oil was imported at “highly discounted rates from Russia.

The petrol and diesel prices were on Tuesday hiked by 80 paise a litre, while the domestic cooking gas prices were increased by Rs 50 per cylinder, ending an over four-and-half month election-related hiatus in rate revision, sources said. “What was the need to increase the price of cooking gas when you (the Centre) have already imported lakhs of barrels of crude oil at highly discounted rates from Russia,” NCP's Maharashtra unit chief spokesperson Mahesh Tapase asked.

The crude oil price has increased to USD 140 per barrel in the wake of the Russia-Ukraine war, he noted.

On one hand, the petroleum ministry is trying to justify the price hike due to increased international prices of crude and on the other, they have made a “swift deal at highly discounted rates”, said the NCP leader, whose party shares power with the Shiv Sena and Congress in Maharashtra.

Maharashtra Congress chief Nana Patole accused the Centre of inflicting atrocities on people as soon as the elections got over.

He was referring to the Assembly polls held recently in five states - Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Manipur and Goa.

“Had said that the BJP will recover (dues) from the people along with interest once it wins elections. Petrol, diesel, gas…recovery on,” Patole tweeted in Hindi.

Petrol in Delhi will now cost Rs 96.21 per litre as against Rs 95.41 previously, while diesel rates have gone up from Rs 86.67 per litre to Rs 87.47.

Simultaneously, the price of a non-subsidised LPG cylinder has been increased to Rs 949.50 for each 14.2-kg bottle in the national capital.

While the LPG rates were last revised on October 6, 2021, petrol and diesel prices had been on a freeze since November 4 as the five states went to polls.

The LPG prices had gone up by close to Rs 100 per cylinder between July and October 6, 2021, before criticism halted the revision in rates.

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