Excise Duty on Petrol, Diesel Raised, Rahul Gandhi Slams Modi Govt

The excise duty on petrol and diesel has been increased by a high margin, to increase revenue.

Updated06 May 2020, 11:52 AM IST
India
2 min read

A day after the central government raised the excise duty on petrol and diesel by a historically high margin, Congress MP Rahul Gandhi tweeted slamming the move.

With a cartoon attached to the tweet, Gandhi said, “Due to the coronavirus lockdown, many people are facing financial crisis. At such a time, when the government is supposed to reduce prices, the move to increase the excise duty of petrol and diesel is unacceptable and must be rolled back.”

The government has taken the opportunity provided by unusually low global oil prices to raise excise duty on petrol and diesel to raise revenue that has been severely impacted by the COVID-19 related lockdown.

It raised excise duties on petrol by Rs 10 per litre and diesel by Rs 13 per litre - that has the potential to raise the retail price of the two petroleum products between Rs 10-15 per litre depending on the taxation structure in different states.

The government has raised the additional excise duty in the form of road cess on petrol and diesel by Rs 8 per litre.

It has also raised special additional excise duty on petrol by Rs 2 per litre and diesel by Rs 5 per litre. The centre would, however, get a tax bonanza and gain in excess of Rs 1,75,000 crore for full year.

As per a notification issued by Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs, the new rates are effective from 6 May.

Government sources said that revenue generated from these duties shall be used for infrastructure and other developmental item of expenditure and could handy for any economic package that may be needed to fight the lockdown imposed to check COVID-19 spread.

Retail sale prices of petrol and diesel will, however, not change on account of this increase in duties, sources said.

Therefore, it will have no impact on the consumer. Oil companies were building the buffer by not revising petrol and diesel prices for last over 50 days though prices were falling.

The government in March had taken Parliamentary approval to raise special additional excise duty on petrol and distal by Rs 8 per litre to Rs 18 per litre from earlier Rs 10 per litre in case of petrol and to Rs 12 per litre from the earlier Rs 4 per litre for diesel. Though duty were not raised then, it was always on cards.

‘Economically Anti-National’: Opposition Slams Hike in Excise Duty for Petrol, Diesel

Besides Rahul Gandhi, several other Congress leaders also hit out at the government over the rise in excise duty. Congress has also asked Centre to share 75% revenue earned from petrol/diesel hike with states to avoid more burden on people.

Party spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala said, “It's 'economically anti-national' to fleece Rs 1.4 lakh crore from 130 crore people by raising petrol, diesel taxes.” Senior party leader Kapil Sibal also called the move an “insensitive and anti-people decision”.

(With inputs from IANS)

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Published: 06 May 2020, 03:27 AM IST
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