Petrol price soars to record high of Rs 90.01 per litre in Kolkata
Kolkata: Blame it on the excessive taxes levied by the Centre on fuels in the state—for the first time in the city's history—the price of petrol skyrocketed to Rs 90.01 per litre on Sunday. This comes at a time when the state has been witnessing a constant increase in the prices of both petrol and diesel for the past seven days. The price of diesel on Sunday stood at Rs 82.65 per litre.
The price of petrol increased between February 1 and 5. It went up from Rs 87.64 to Rs 88.30 per litre. After remaining constant at Rs 88.30 till February 8, it increased daily to touch Rs 90.01 per litre on Sunday. Diesel price has also once again started going up from February 8 when it was priced at Rs 80.71 per litre.
According to experts, the "abnormal increase" in petrol and diesel prices would lead to increase in prices of essential commodities. The base prices of petrol and diesel remained at Rs 18.78 and Rs 18 per litre respectively on Sunday. The Centre levies tax of 250 per cent on the base price of both petrol and diesel besides, the 25 per cent and 17 per cent sales tax on the base price of petrol and diesel respectively in Bengal. At the same time, there is a cess of Rs 1 per litre and dealer's commission of Rs 2.17 per litre on diesel and Rs 3.21 per litre on petrol gets added to the price charged to people.
Experts said the price of crude oil in the international market at present is 62 to 64 US dollars per barrel and the price here is skyrocketing to Rs 90.01 per litre because of excessive taxes. When Manmohan Singh was Prime Minister, the price of crude oil in the international market went up to 122 to 124 US dollar per barrel. But, the price of petrol and diesel here remained controlled at Rs 74 per litre and Rs 62 to Rs 64 per litre respectively.
Prasenjit Sen, Joint Secretary of West Bengal Petroleum Dealers Association, said: "The situation is gradually becoming difficult for us to survive as now we need to spend additional at least Rs 3 lakh to procure 12,000-litre fuel. The government should take steps in this regard. Otherwise, both petrol pump owners and common people will suffer equally."
Petrol price was increased by 29 paise per litre and diesel by 32 paise, according to a price notification of state-owned fuel retailers.
In Sriganganagar town of Rajasthan, petrol soared to Rs 99.29 and diesel jumped to Rs 91.17 per litre. In the national Capital, petrol climbed to Rs 88.73 a litre and diesel soared to Rs 79.06. n Mumbai, regular petrol price soared to its highest ever level of Rs 95.21 and that of diesel rose to Rs 86.04. Premium or branded petrol in the city comes for Rs 97.99 and same grade diesel for Rs 89.27 a litre.
In six straight days, prices have gone up by Rs 1.80 per litre for petrol and Rs 1.88 for diesel.