Diesel price hiked by 50 paise, petrol rates unchanged

DieselThe price of diesel in Delhi will be hiked by 57 paise, including tax, to Rs 53.67 per litre (AP)

Diesel prices were today hiked by 50 paise per litre but there will be no revision in rates of petrol this fortnight.

The price increase, the 11th since January, excludes local sales tax or VAT and will be effective from midnight tonight, oil companies announced.

The price of diesel in Delhi will be hiked by 57 paise, including tax, to Rs 53.67 per litre, while it will cost Rs 60.70 a litre in Mumbai as against 60.08 currently.

There will be no change in petrol prices as oil companies decided not to pass on the 25-30 paise increase necessitated by depreciation of the rupee against the US dollar.

State-owned oil firms, which revise petrol prices on the 1st and 16th of every month based on trends in oil prices and currency exchange rate in the preceding fortnight, had left the rates unchanged even on November 16.

Petrol prices were last revised on November 1, when it was cut by Rs 1.15 a litre. It costs Rs 71.02 a litre in Delhi currently.

The government allowed oil companies in January to raise diesel prices in small doses every month to wipe out mounting losses.

While most of the shortfall on diesel sales should have been wiped out, losses mounted to Rs 14.50 per litre in July-August as the rupee fell about 25 per cent from April levels.

The recent firming up of the rupee against the dollar and the monthly price increases have trimmed these losses to Rs 9.99 a litre. Diesel rates have risen by a cumulative Rs 6.62 this year.

Indian Oil Corp, the nation's largest fuel retailer, said the 50 paise per litre increase in diesel rates was "pursuant to Government of India order dated January 17, 2013, whereby oil marketing companies have been authorised to increase the retail selling price of diesel within a small range every month until further orders."

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