The prices of petrol continued its upward march on Monday, the second day running, taking its price closer to century mark in Delhi and Kolkata, the only two metro cities where the fuel is still below Rs 100 a litre.
In Delhi, price of the fuel increased by 35 paise from Rs 99.51 on Sunday to Rs 99.86 a litre on Monday. In Kolkata, Petrol prices moved up from Rs 99.45 a litre to Rs 99.84 a litre.
With the increase, petrol prices are expected to cross the century mark in these two cities at next revision. With this the fuel will be over Rs 100 a litre in all four metros and other major cities across the country.
In the financial capital Mumbai, petrol price now stands at Rs 105.92 while diesel costs Rs 96.91, data available on Indian Oil Corporation’s website showed. In Chennai too, petrol has hit century with pump prices being Rs 100.75 a litre.
Like last week, OMCs kept diesel prices unchanged on Monday to provide relief to the transport sector that runs largely on this fuel.
The price of diesel in Delhi remains at Rs 89.36 per litre, while in Mumbai, Chennai and Kolkata it is priced at Rs 96.91, Rs 93.91 and Rs 92.27 per litre, respectively.
Officials in oil companies attribute the consistent increase in fuel prices to development in global oil markets where both product and crude prices have been firming up for past couple of months on rise in demand amidst slowing of pandemic. However, closer look at fuel retail prices in India gives a picture that it is high level of taxes that is keeping fuel rate higher even in times when global oil prices are firm.
Global crude oil price is now hovering around $75 a barrel. It was over $80 a barrel in October 2018 but even then, the petrol prices hovered around Rs 80 a litre across the county. So, even with lower oil prices now, petrol prices have hit century and crossed it by a wider margin now in several parts of the country.
The only way retail prices could be brought down in this period is by way of tax cuts by both Centre and States, suggests experts as crude oil prices are seen rising from here on.
Fuel prices are already touching new highs every other day.