Petroleum Minister Murli Deora on Wednesday started consultations with political parties, including UPA’s partners, ahead of taking a proposal to increase fuel prices to the Union Cabinet, possibly tomorrow.

Mr. Deora met A. Raja, Telecom Minister and senior leader of UPA’s ally, DMK, this morning as part of efforts to build consensus for freeing petrol and diesel prices, and marginally increasing kerosene and LPG rates.

Sources said Mr. Raja was non-commital on the proposal and is believed to have told Mr. Deora that a position on the proposal will be taken by his party’s leader M Karunanidhi.

The Congress core group is meeting later in the evening where the implementation of Kirit Parikh Committee report on fuel pricing reforms may be discussed.

Sources said the Petroleum Ministry is likely to go with the Kirit Parikh panel’s recommendation of freeing petrol and diesel prices, but wants the hike proposed for LPG and kerosene moderated.

The Kirit Parikh Committee had suggested an increase of Rs. 6 a litre in kerosene rates and a Rs. 100 per cylinder increase in LPG prices.

Sources said the Ministry will push for a minimum of 50 per cent increase in the hike suggested by Kirit Parikh Committe at the meeting on Wednesday.

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