Petrol price revision likely on June 17
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The expected cut in petrol prices would take place a couple of days later than expected as petroleum minister S Jaipal Reddy wants to be in the Capital when the revision is announced.
The planned price cut of Rs 1.92 per litre at Delhi retail outlets is likely to be announced on Sunday to time with Reddy's return to the Capital. The minister is presently in Vienna to attend the 5th OPEC International Seminar. The three state-run oil marketing companies had planned to cut prices of so-called "decontrolled" petrol at their fortnightly price review today but were informally told to do it from midnight of Sunday-Monday by which time Reddy would have landed in Delhi.
The head of an OMC confirmed that politics continued to plague petrol pricing. "Our minister (Reddy) is not here and the finance minister (Pranab Mukherjee) has been named as presidential candidate. We will wait for our minister to return." The petrol price review is scheduled for the 15th and last day of each month and the proposal this time was to reduce the ex-refinery price by Rs 1.60 per litre, said the OMC official and added that global prices of petrol had come down in the last fortnight giving them the space. But for the further rupee depreciation to Rs 56 from Rs 54 to a dollar, the cut could have been more, he said.
On May 31, they were instructed to delay the announcement of a partial rollback in prices lest its credit went to the opposition NDA coalition which had staged an all-India bandh that day against the historic hike. Though first made public on May 24, the planned cut was finally announced on June 3.
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