Petrol and diesel rates in Panchkula and Chandigarh are nearing what they were 12 days ago, before the excise reduction by the Centre and the state government and UT cuts. In Mohali, the diesel rate has already crossed what it was before the reduction.
Effective October 5, the Union Government had announced a cut of Rs 2.50 per litre on fuel. Following the Centre’s decision, the Haryana government too reduced VAT, slashing a total of Rs 4.60 off per litre diesel and Rs 4.38 off per litre petrol.
Following suit, the Chandigarh Administration, too, announced a reduction in its VAT, cutting Rs 3.73 off per litre petrol and Rs 3.67 per litre diesel, effective October 6. The Punjab government, though, did not reduce any VAT on its behalf and the reduction was only Rs 2.50 per litre on both petrol and diesel, as announced by the Centre.
However, an analysis of the fuel rates of the last 12 days shows that there was an average increase of 15-20 paise daily. Petrol pump owners said the relief announced by the government is inching towards cancellation because of the increase in fuel rates. In the case of Mohali, the rates of diesel have already crossed the October 4 rates.
The rates of diesel, which were reduced to Rs 71.67 per litre in Panchkula, hit Rs 74.34 per litre on Tuesday. It was Rs 76.27 before the reduction.
The rate of petrol, which fell to Rs 79.99 from Rs 84.37, is now Rs 81.29 per litre.
Bhagwan Das Mittal, member of the Panchkula Petrol Pump Owners Association, said the effect of reduction had almost been nullified now. “In case of diesel, if you see, more than half of the reduced amount has been covered up. Even the rate with which it increases every day, I can say that within five to six days, the rates in petrol will reach the point from where the government announced the cut,” he added.
In Mohali, where the reduction was only of Rs 2.50 per litre, the diesel rate has already crossed the pre-October 5 price.
On October 4, diesel was Rs 75.83 per litre and following reduction by the Centre, it fell to Rs 73.38 per litre. However, on October 16, it was Rs 76.07 per litre.
Petrol in Mohali is Rs 88.94 per litre. On October 5, it was Rs 87.57 per litre.
Sohan Lal, member of the Mohali District Petrol Pump Owners Association, added that 75 per cent of their sales have come down because in Tricity, the district continues to offer most expensive fuel. There are 71 fuel stations in Mohali district.
“We requested the government a number of times that there has been a huge revenue loss to Punjab because people have been buying fuel from Chandigarh. Like my fuel station would deal with 40,000 litres of fuel and now that has come down to 7,000 litres on daily basis,” said Sohan Lal. “You can clearly figure out from the increase in rates every day that the Rs 2.50 cut was an eyewash. We are already running into losses,” he added.
In Chandigarh, on October 6, when UT added its VAT cut to the Centre’s reduction, the price of petrol was Rs 77.12 per litre and diesel Rs 69.69 per litre. On Tuesday, the rates were Rs 78.20 per litre and Rs 72.02 per litre on petrol and diesel, respectively. Before October 5, petrol was Rs 80.85 per litre and diesel Rs 73.36.
Chandigarh, though, continues to offer the cheapest petrol and diesel in Tricity.