Petrol and diesel prices were unaltered for the fifth consecutive day on March 3 across Indian states. In the international market, crude oil was trading at $65.69 (approx. Rs 4,813.37) per barrel, while the West Texas Intermediate (WTI) were at $62.70 per barrel.
Retail fuel prices reached a record high on Saturday, February 27 when the rate of key fuel went up by 24 paise and by 15 paise for diesel per litre each. Currently, the price of petrol in New Delhi is at Rs 91.17 per litre, Rs 91.35 in Kolkata, Rs 93.11 in Chennai and it remains the highest among the four Metros in Mumbai at Rs 97.57.
Similarly, the price of diesel, the most-used automotive fuel in the country, remained unchanged. Currently, the diesel rates stood at Rs 81.47 per litre in New Delhi, Rs 84.35 in Kolkata, Rs 88.60 in Mumbai and Rs 86.45 in Chennai.
In several other parts of India, including some cities in Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan, petrol prices have crossed Rs 100 per litre. The increasing fuel prices have led to widespread criticism of the Centre by opposition parties.
After remaining unchanged for almost a month, prices of both the fuels have recorded an upswing since January this year. And due to a rally in global crude oil prices, the retail fuel prices in the country were hiked as many as 16 times in February, according to a Hindustan Times report.
According to a Financial Express report, the Finance Ministry is considering cutting excise duties on petrol and diesel to cushion the impact of record high domestic prices. The report also cited doubling of the price of crude oil over the past 10 months has contributed to all time high fuel prices in India.
However, Union Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan had last week said the petrol and diesel prices will fall towards end of winter.