M A I N   N E W S

Petrol prices cut by Rs 2 per litre 

New Delhi, June 2 
Faced with public outcry, petrol prices were today cut by Rs 2.02 per litre in a partial rollback of the Rs 7.54-a-litre hike — the steepest ever — announced more than a week ago.s

The first reduction in rates in six months, which will result in the price in Delhi going down to Rs 71.16 a litre from midnight tonight from Rs 73.18 at present, is led by a dip in the international oil prices.

Technically, oil companies should have cut rates on May 31 — the due date as per the practice of fortnightly revision — but the announcement was deferred in an apparent attempt to thwart opposition BJP from taking credit for the move.

The NDA and Left had on Thursday organised a nationwide strike in protest against the hike, which had also come under sharp attack from allies such as the Trinamool Congress and DMK and some ministers in the ruling UPA.

Today's decision will come as some relief for consumers battered by double-digit inflation and the May 24 hike - the first in six months and third in a year.

“It has been decided to revise the petrol prices downward by Rs 2.02 per litre (including state levies in Delhi),” Indian Oil Corp, the nation's largest fuel retailer, making an announcement on behalf of the industry, said.

“The decrease in other states will vary depending upon the rate of state VAT/sales tax.”

Oil companies had last reduced rates by Rs 0.78 per litre on December 1 and by Rs 2.22 a litre on November 16. The reductions had followed a Rs 1.80-hike in rates from November 4.

The Rs 7.54 per litre hike on May 24 was done considering an average gasoline price of $124.37 per barrel and a rupee-dollar exchange rate of Rs 53.17 in the first fortnight of May.

Gasoline price have since fallen to $115.77 per barrel in the second fortnight but rupee-dollar rate has worsened to Rs 54.96 to a US dollar during the period.

The fall meant that petrol rates be cut by Rs 1.68 per litre, excluding local sales tax or VAT. In Delhi, after including 20 per cent VAT, the reduction will be Rs 2.02 a litre.





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