Petrol, diesel cheaper by Rs 5 in Maharashtra and Gujarat

Shares of oil marketing companies fell after finance minister Arun Jaitley said that the government has asked the companies to absorb Rs 1 cut on fuel prices

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley today laid down a three-point plan to bring petrol and diesel prices under control.

"The government has always remained positive on the issue of reducing fuel prices".

Top sources said that the state government is also considering a reduction in the prices of diesel.

Following the Centre's appeal, several State governments including Tripura, Maharastra, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand and Gujarat announced to provide give additional relief of Rs 2.50 per litre on petrol and diesel to give benefit of Rs 5 per litre to people in their respective States. Notably, central and state taxes and levies amount to more than the cost it takes to manufacture motor fuel. He also said he would write to all the states to cut their respective taxes.

A one rupee per litre cut in excise duty results in over Rs 14,000 crore of revenue loss to the centre on an annualised basis. The announcement came from Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley after an inter-ministerial meeting headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi.

In the National Capital Region (NCR), petrol is being sold at Rs 84 per litre, diesel is being sold at Rs 75.45 per litre.

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Petrol prices have been rising for more than a month now and have reached fresh record highs across the country.

Additionally, oil companies are to be asked to absorb another Re 1 per litre.

Brent crude oil hit $86 per barrel on Wednesday, recording its highest level in 4 years.

Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka are among the handful of states which have reduced Value-Added Tax to give some comfort to consumers.

Since mid-August, the petrol price has risen by Rs 6.86 a litre and diesel by Rs 6.73 - the most in any six-week duration after the daily price revision was introduced in mid-June past year. Jaitley expressed confidence in maintaining the fiscal deficit target for the current financial year despite the reductions. He said on Twitter, "I congratulate the chief ministers of all the BJP-ruled states for this sensitive decision that will give relief to the public".

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