Diesel cheaper by Rs 4.06

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It is to be noted that the Maharashtra government has reduced the price of petrol only and not diesel. In Mumbai, petrol rates had breached Rs 90 per litre.

The three private firms had shut fuel stations in 2008 when they could not compete with what was then highly subsided petrol and diesel prices.

Other pump owners expressed apprehensions that with the reduction in Value-Added Tax on petrol in Maharashtra, diesel prices will gradually catch up with petrol if immediate relief is not provided.

The Centre on Thursday slashed excise duty on fuel to the tune of Rs 1.50 per litre, thus reducing the overall price of petrol and diesel each by Rs 2.50 per litre.

Earlier this week on Thursday, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley announced that the Centre will cut excise duty on petrol and diesel by Rs 1.5 and OMCs will absorb Re 1 on the prices. He added that the last time that the Centre asked states to provide relief to the common man "only BJP or NDA allies-led states" did that.

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The state will do so if the Centre bring the fuel prices down to the level when the Narendra Modi government assumed office in May 2014, Issac told the media here while reacting to Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley's statement in this regard.

Addressing mediapersons in New Delhi, Congress spokesman Randeep Singh Surjewala called the cut "a panic reaction in the face of public anger" ahead of assembly polls in four states. Gujarat government reduced petrol and diesel prices by Rs 2.50 per litre, while Maharashtra lowered petrol price by 2.50 per litre. He said that Rs 10,500 crore will be the impact of the excise duty cut this year. Rising crude oil prices, and weakening of Rupee against the Dollar is seen as the major reason for this increase in price of petrol and diesel.

Another wondered: "Make me understand this: after fuel prices go up by Rs 20, they get cut by Rs 2 and we "celebrate"?"

The year 2015-16 and 2016-17 was the best in terms of revenue generation from oil for the central government. Any further revenue loss, however, could widen the fiscal deficit.

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