STATE TIMES NEWS
New Delhi: Petrol price on Sunday was increased by 24 paise per litre and diesel by 27 paise, pushing rates across the country to record highs and that of petrol in Mumbai to near Rs 99 a litre.The increase led to rates in Delhi climbing to Rs 92.58 per litre and diesel to Rs 83.22, according to a price notification of state-owned fuel retailers.Rates had already crossed Rs 100-mark in several cities in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra and with the latest increase, price in Mumbai too was inching towards that level.A litre of petrol in Mumbai now comes for Rs 98.88 and diesel is priced at Rs 90.40 per litre.Fuel prices differ from state to state depending on the incidence of local taxes such as VAT and freight charges. Rajasthan levies the highest value-added tax (VAT) on petrol in the country, followed by Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra.This is the ninth increase in prices since May 4 when the state-owned oil firms ended an 18-hiatus in rate revision they observed during assembly elections in states like West Bengal.Sri Ganganagar district of Rajasthan had the costliest petrol and diesel in the country at Rs 103.52 per litre and Rs 95.99 a litre, respectively.In nine increases, petrol price has risen by Rs 2.19 per litre and diesel by Rs 2.49.Since March last year when the government raised excise duty on fuel to an all-time high, petrol price has increased by a record Rs 22.99 per litre (after accounting for a handful of occasions when rates fell) and diesel by Rs 20.93.Oil companies, which have in recent months resorted to unexplained freeze in rate revision, had hit a pause button after cutting prices marginally on April 15. This coincided with electioneering hitting a peak to elect new governments in five states including West Bengal.No sooner had voting ended, oil companies indicated an impending increase in retail prices in view of firming trend in international oil markets.Central and state taxes make up for 60 per cent of the retail selling price of petrol and over 54 per cent of diesel. The union government levies Rs 32.90 per litre of excise duty on petrol and Rs 31.80 on diesel.
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