Petrol, diesel prices hit record high on Friday

Police stop Madhya Pradesh Congress workers who were holding a demonstration at Raj Bhawan over hike in the prices of diesel, petrol and LPG cylinders, in Bhopal, Friday. PTI

A call for Bharat Bandh by the Opposition parties appeared to have cut no ice with the government or the oil marketing companies, who continued to raise rates of petrol and diesel on Friday.

In Delhi, petrol prices neared Rs 80 per litre (Rs 79.99) while diesel price topped at Rs 72 a litre. The two fuels were cheapest in Delhi as compared to other metro cities and state capitals.

In Mumbai, both the fuels were selling costliest. A litre of petrol in Mumbai cost Rs 87.39 while a litre of diesel was priced at Rs 76.51.

Industry sources said there is little hope of respite in petrol and diesel prices in the coming days as the prices of crude have gone above $78 a barrel while the rupee is trading at a low of around 72 against the dollar.

Since India is a net importer of crude oil, any upward price movement in the imported oil coupled with a lower dollar-rupee exchange rate becomes a dangerous mix.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, however, has warned against any knee-jerk reaction on crude or rupee movement as India, the world's fastest growing economy, can withstand the temporary volatility in prices as well as the exchange rate.

Prices of the petrol and diesel have been rising continuously since mid- August barring a one-day respite on Wednesday.

The Opposition Congress has called a Bharat Bandh on Monday over rise in petrol and diesel prices. It claimed that several opposition parties like Samajwadi Party, DMK and the NCP have extended their support to the Bandh. Left parties are likely to observe a strike separately on the same day.

 

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Petrol, diesel prices hit record high on Friday

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