Petrol prices have been going up for almost two weeks now, touching new highs every day. Amid the surge, Union Petroleum and Natural Gas and Steel Minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Sunday told the reason behind the surge in prices.
“There are two main reasons behind the fuel price rise. The international market has reduced fuel production and manufacturing countries are producing less fuel to gain more profit. This is making the consumer countries suffer,” Pradhan told news agency ANI during his visit to inspect the venue where Prime Minister Narendra Modi is scheduled to address a rally in Assam`s Dhemaji on Monday.
He added, “We have continuously been urging the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and OPEC plus countries that it should not happen. We hope there will be a change.”
Notably, the price of petrol has even crossed Rs 100 per litre in some states.
Further, Pradhan justified the taxes levied on petrol and diesel. saying that the central and state governments are doing development work in wake of COVID-19 pandemic, for which they collect taxes. He added that these projects also generate employment.
“Another reason is COVID. We have to do various development work. For this, Centre and state governments collect the tax. Spending on development work will generate more jobs. Govt has increased its investment and 34 per cent more capital spending will be done in this budget. State governments will also increase spending. This is why we need this tax but there is also the need for balance. I believe the Finance Minister and state governments can find a way,” stated the minister.
Amid an outcry over record high petrol and diesel prices, Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Saturday said the Centre and state governments will together have to work out a mechanism to bring retail rates to reasonable levels.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday is scheduled to inaugurate the INDMAX Unit at Indian Oil`s Bongaigaon Refinery, Oil India Limited`s Secondary Tank Farm at Madhuban, Dibrugarh and a Gas Compressor Station at Hebeda Village, Makum, Tinsukia.
(With ANI inputs)