"All Chief Ministers On Test Now", Says Arun Jaitley, Cutting Fuel Price

Arun Jaitley,Fuel price hike,Finance minister

The chief ministers of a number of BJP-ruled states also expressed their appreciation of the move, while stating that they will follow suit and cut state taxes.

"Ever since Modi government assumed power it raised excise duty on diesel by Rs 14 and petrol by Rs 9 per litre".

The Congress, however, hit out at the Narendra Modi government over what it described as a "meagre" reduction in excise duty on petrol and diesel.

The share prices of oil marketing companies like Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd plunged immediately, down by as much as 12% in initial trading after Jaitley's remarks.

Additionally, oil companies are to be asked to absorb another Re 1 per litre. In response, the governments of Maharashtra and Gujarat have also announced a reduction in excise duties.

Asked by a reporter about the economic implications of the move, Jaitley said the decision was "good economics" as it won't impact the fiscal deficit and will allow consumers to boost spending on other goods. State-run refiners will also cut the price they charge by 1 rupee per litre. "The Centre should reduce prices by at least Rs 10". "What will they do now and last time also only BJP and NDA-led state governments reduced Value-Added Tax".




Surjewala said the government must also answer to the people for hiking central excise duty on 12 occasions, raising the central excise on petrol by 211 pc and on diesel by 443 pc.

"As you know, brent oil has crossed $86 a barrel, the higher it has been in the last four years", Mr. Jaitley said at a press conference. The prices of petrol are maximum across the state, soaring above Rs 91 in many districts of the state.

Since mid-August, the petrol price has risen by Rs 6.86 a litre and diesel by Rs 6.73 - the most in any six-week duration after the daily price revision was introduced in mid-June past year.

Rupee Thursday dropped to 73.77 against the dollar, resulting in expensive crude imports.

"I am confident we'll be able to maintain the fiscal deficit even after absorbing this", the minister said. "Inflation is still moderate less than 4 per cent", Jaitley added.

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