Fuel prices: Petrol, diesel (Representative image)
Petrol and diesel prices remained unchanged for the 17th consecutive day on November 21 after the Central government cut the excise duty on the two fuels to bring down retail rates from record highs, according to the price notification of state-owned fuel retailers.
The government cut excise duty on petrol by Rs 5 per litre and on diesel by Rs 10 a litre on November 3 to give relief to consumers battered by record-high retail fuel prices. The November 4 decline took the price of petrol in Delhi to Rs 103.97 a litre. The price remained the same on November 19. Diesel price stayed unchanged at Rs 86.67 per litre on the day.
In Mumbai, fuel prices witnessed a similar trend. The petrol price remained unchanged and retailed at Rs 109.98 a litre. On May 29, Mumbai became the first metro in the country where petrol was retailed above Rs 100 per litre. Diesel price also remained the same and sold at Rs 94.14 per litre.
The petrol and diesel prices remained unchanged in Kolkata at Rs 104.67 per litre and Rs 89.79 per litre, respectively.
Chennai retailed a litre of petrol at the same price of Rs 101.40. Diesel price also remained unchanged at Rs 91.43 per litre.
The excise duty cut was the highest-ever reduction in excise duty. Reducing the excise duty, the union government also urged states to commensurately reduce or value-added tax (VAT) on petrol and diesel to give relief to consumers.
Following this, 26 states and union territories have cut VAT to give further reprieve to consumers battered by record-high retail prices. The latest addition to this list is Rajasthan, which has announced to slash VAT to make petrol and diesel cheaper by Rs 4 per litre and Rs 5 per litre.
The states/UTs that extended additional VAT benefits are Ladakh, Karnataka, Puducherry, Jammu and Kashmir, Sikkim, Mizoram, Himachal Pradesh, Daman and Diu, Dadra and Nagr Haveli, Chandigarh, Assam, Madhya Pradesh, Tripura, Gujarat, Nagaland, Punjab, Goa, Meghalaya, Odisha, Rajasthan, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Andaman and Nicobar, Bihar, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh and Haryana.
States that have so far not lowered VAT include Congress and its allies ruled Chhattisgarh, Maharashtra, Jharkhand and Tamil Nadu. AAP-ruled Delhi, TMC-governed West Bengal, Left-ruled Kerala, TRS-led Telangana and YSR Congress-ruled Andhra Pradesh have also not cut VAT.
Congress-ruled Punjab has seen the biggest reduction in price of petrol in the country after it cut local sales tax or VAT the most while UT of Ladakh witnessed the largest reduction in diesel rates for the same reason.