Petrol races past Rs 95, diesel crosses Rs 86 a litre

by Ajit Dalvi 14 Feb 2021


FEBRUARY 15 UPDATE: Petrol and diesel prices have been raised for the seventh consecutive day. Between February 14 and 15, prices for petrol and diesel are up by 25 paise and 30 paise respectively. See latest price table for four metros below: 

Today is Valentine’s Day, a celebration of love and affection the world over. But in India, motorists' love for travel and their vehicles may be impacted by the unabated rise in the price of petrol and diesel. And a long drive might prove to be an expensive affair as fossil fuel prices have risen for the fifth consecutive day, continuing to scale record highs.

Today’s wallet-busting price for a litre of petrol in Mumbai is Rs 95.21 and Rs 86.04 for a litre of diesel, which makes them Rs 4.79 and Rs 13.96 shy of hitting the Rs 100-per-litre mark. The price rise in diesel is speedier than petrol. If the current trend continues, without the Central and State governments cutting taxes, the Rs 100 mark for petrol is likely to be crossed before the end of the fiscal year – March 31, 2021.

Look at the price statistics table above and you get an idea of how fuel prices have risen in the past 10 days as well as the past month. In Mumbai, where fuel prices are usually the highest among metros, petrol price has risen by Rs 2.01 a litre in 7 days and by Rs 3.89 in a month (Delhi beats Mumbai with a Rs 4.03 per litre hike). Diesel users have it even worse – prices are up by Rs 2.37 a litre in 7 days and by Rs 4.44 in a month.

The price differential between the two fuels, which was Rs 10.09 a litre at the start of the fiscal year FY2021 on April 1, 2020, is today down to Rs 9.17 a litre, indicating the speedier price rise in diesel, which is the fuel used by scores of commercial vehicles crisscrossing the country and transporting essential goods and directly contributing to overall inflation. Not surprisingly, transporters – as well as millions of motorists – are worried.  

It is understood that following a governing council meeting yesterday, the All-India Motor Transport Congress (AIMTC) has issued a 14-day ultimatum to the government, threatening to suspend transport services across the country.

Taxes make up for over 61% of retail petrol price and 56% diesel. The retail price of the two fuels is made up of three components – base price that reflects the cost of international oil, central excise duty and state taxes. Both Central and State governments rely heavily on collections from taxes on these products for meeting their developmental and welfare priorities. On February 12, Assam announced a price cut of Rs 5 per litre on petrol and fuel. Will other states follow suit?

READ MORE: Motorists spend more money to travel the same distance