oppn parties Tame The Oil Price Demon Fast

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  • MS Dhoni decides to take a two-month break, will skip West Indies tour but will not retire
  • Phagu Chauhan is the new Governor of Bihar while Ramesh Bais has been appointed as that of Tripura
  • Governors: Anandiben Patel shifted from Madhya Pradesh to Uttar Pradesh and Lalji Tandon from Bihar to Madhya Pradesh
  • Naga talks interlocutor RN Ravi appointed as Governor of Nagaland
  • Noted lawyer Jagdeep Dhankhar appointed as new Governor of West Bengal
  • 84 NDRF teams have been despatched to 23 states to tackle the flood situation
  • Three persons lynched in Bihar after being accused of cattle theft
  • Delhi police seize a consignment of 1500 kgs of heroin and busts a cartel of Afghanistan-Pakistan narcotics dealers with links to the Taliban
  • Supreme Court gives 9 more months to complete the Babri Masjid demolition case trial
  • Priyanka Gandhi not allowed to meet the families of the dead in the Sonabhadra firing, arrested
  • ICC inducts Sachin Tendulkar in [email protected]@@s Hall of Fame
  • Stock markets bleed for the second day. Sensex crashes 560 points
  • S Jaishankar, Minister of External Affairs, says Pakistan should release and repatriate Kulbhushan Jadhav immediately
  • Karnataka Governor Vajubhai Vala asks the Speaker to hold the trust vote latest by 1.30 pm today
  • The Government sends a list of 24 questions to mobile app company that runs video app TikTok seeking answers for anti-national and obscene content carried on the platform
Former Delhi CM and senior Congress leader Sheila Dikshit dies following a cardiac arrest. She was 81
oppn parties
Tame The Oil Price Demon Fast

By Ashwini Agarwal

The spiraling price of petrol and diesel has left the government worried and the public angry while providing ammunition to the opposition to fire more salvos at the NDA government. It is definitely a matter of concern that prices of fuel have been raised everyday for the last 10 days in the free pricing regime. The oil companies have no alternative as they have a set formula and if price increases in the global market, it is reflected in India. But the government definitely has many alternatives.

Since the price has increased nearly Rs 10 per litre from the level it was till as recently as September 2017, the time has come to take a hard look at the duties and taxes imposed on crude and petroleum products. For the last couple of days, the government is saying that it is holding meetings to work out formulas to ease the pain both in the short term and a more permanent solution for future. But it has to hurry and come out with a solution sooner rather than later. In doing so, it should not take the regressive step of controlled pricing.

It has to cut import levies, as suggested by private players and it has to reduce excise duty. It has also got to impress upon the state government to reduce VAT. Finally, it has also got to tell the oil companies to reduce their profit levels, say by just half a percentage point. For, with OPEC and other oil producers showing no inclination to work towards a stable price regime, oil prices are likely to balloon to $ 85-90 per barrel (from $ 79.5 now) in the next 6-12 months. The government must employ a set formula that will offset increase in global prices by corresponding, and automatic, cut in import duty and excise. Any further increase in price of petrol and diesel will bring about spiraling inflation and strife. Already, unions of bus and truck operators have given notice of a strike if prices continue to rise.