Fuel prices kept on breaking records with petrol being raised by 26 to 30 paise and diesel by 34 to 37 paise across the country on Wednesday on the back of crude oil soaring to 2014 highs in the international markets.
The latest round of hike sent the petrol price in Delhi to its record high of Rs 102.94 a litre and to Rs 108.96 in Mumbai. Diesel rates, too, touched a record Rs 91.42 in Delhi and Rs 99.17 in Mumbai.
In Kolkata, petrol prices soared to Rs 103.65 per litre and diesel prices to Rs 94.53 per litre on the day, while in Chennai, the fuels sold for Rs 100.49 a litre and Rs 95.93 a litre.
Petrol and diesel prices differ across states, depending on the incidence of local taxes.
Meanwhile, Mahanagar Gas increased the retail price of compressed natural gas (CNG) also increased by Rs 2.59/kg and piped natural gas (PNG) by Rs 2.27/SCM.
The price of a non-subsidised domestic LPG cylinder increased by Rs 15, which revised its price to Rs 899.50 in Delhi. In 2021, the price of 14.2 kg LPG cylinder has been surged by Rs 205.50.
The seventh increase in fuel rates in around a week’s time has sent petrol prices above Rs 100 in most major cities of the country. Similarly, the tenth increase in prices in less than two weeks has shot up diesel rates above Rs 100 mark in several cities in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Odisha, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.
International oil prices rallied to a near seven-year high following a decision by OPEC+ to maintain its planned gradual increase of supply, despite the market facing an energy crunch. Global benchmark Brent jumped to $81.51 per barrel, while West Texas Intermediate rose to $77.76 a barrel.
Being a net importer of oil, India prices petrol and diesel at rates equivalent to international prices. A month back Brent was less than $72 per barrel.
With international crude oil prices moving in both directions during July and August, oil marketing companies (OMCs) restrained from any price hike from July 18 to September 23. Instead, petrol went cheaper by Rs 0.65 a litre and diesel by Rs 1.25. However, with no respite from surging international prices, OMCs began increasing the retail selling price of petrol and diesel with effect from September 28 and September 24, respectively.
Prior to the July-August price cuts, the petrol price was increased by Rs 11.44 a litre between May 4 and July 17 and diesel by Rs 9.14.
The relentless increase in fuel prices has been criticised by opposition parties who have demanded that the government cut record excise duty on the two fuels to give relief to consumers. The government has so far not agreed to the demand.