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Fuel Price Hike

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"The hike was necessitated because of rising international crude oil prices which have doubled to USD 70 a barrel since December," Petroleum Minister Murli Deora told reporters here.

The issue was not taken to the Cabinet, as is done generally, but Deora consulted party leadership and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to decide on the hike.

The decision would help garner Rs 13,000 crore this fiscal, although the oil companies were projecting a loss of Rs 39,000 crore before the hike. The decision comes ahead of the July 6 budget day.

Parliament's budget session is to begin tomorrow and clearly the government wanted to take a decision before that. The weekly Cabinet meeting is scheduled for tomorrow.

Deora said the government will not raise the domestic LPG and kerosene prices though the public sector oil companies are losing Rs 92.96 per cylinder and Rs 15.26 a litre respectively.

After the increase, petrol in Delhi will cost Rs 44.62 a litre and diesel Rs 32.86 a litre.


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