Govt's "Diwali Gift": Relief Unlikely From Petrol-Diesel Price Cut
The Central government has slashed the excise duty it collects on petrol and diesel, thereby bringing down fuel prices in what it calls as a “Diwali Gift” for the public. Home Minister Amit Shah has described this move as one to provide relief to people, and this claim has been echoed by many media and social media handles affiliated with the government narrative.
This marginal price cut, however, will have no effect of the astronomical rates of fuel prices crushing the common people of the country. The Centre had earned lakhs of crores through excise duty during the pandemic as well.
The Petroleum Ministry had announced a ₹5 and ₹10 slash in petrol and diese prices respectively on November 3rd by cutting back on the excise duty it levies It also appealed to states to reduce VAT on fuel. After this, the majority of BJP-ruled states cut their fuel prices. It was clear that this was done to bring down the costs of fuel to under ₹100, but it was effective only in certain states.
After the Centre’s announcements, the BJP-led governments of Assam, Manipur, Tripura, Karnataka, Goa, and Gujarat reduced VAT on fuel by ₹7, after which it was said that petrol and diesel sold for ₹12 and ₹17 less.
The Uttar Pradesh and Haryana governments had reduced VAT on petrol by ₹7 and by ₹2 on diesel.
Similarly, the Kejriwal government in Delhi announced slashing VAT by ₹6.07 on petrol and ₹11.75 on diesel. Despite this, fuel was still sold for over ₹100 in the capital which is unlikely to offer any real relief to commuters.
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