A cut in taxes on petrol and diesel is ruled out for now as neither the central government nor some states have the appetite to stomach revenue loss from such a move, a top government official said Monday.
While a cut in excise duty that the central government levies will impact fiscal deficit, states like Bihar, Kerala, and Punjab are not in a position to cut sales tax (or VAT), the official, who wished not to be identified, said.
The government, he said, anticipates that international oil prices, which together with a drop in the value of rupee has been fuelling the fuel price rise to record levels, will moderate in coming days to take pressure off. The comments come on a day when opposition parties held nationwide protests against record high petrol and diesel prices.
Prices in Delhi, where rates are the cheapest among all metros and most state capitals because of lower VAT, saw petrol touch an all-time high of ₹80.73 per litre Monday while diesel scaled to new high of ₹72.83 a litre. The official said consumers will have to pay for the fuel they use. While Rajasthan on Sunday announced a 4 per cent cut in VAT on petrol and diesel, Andhra Pradesh Monday said fuel prices will be reduced by ₹2 each from cut in sales tax.