Long queue at fuel stations near border as petrol and diesel become cheaper in Karnataka


With prices of petrol and diesel becoming cheaper in Karnataka compared to almost all neighbouring States from November 4 following a reduction in State duties along with a cut in Central excise, fuel stations in border areas have been witnessing a manifold jump in sales volume.

Vehicle owners in border districts of Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Maharashtra have been queueing up at fuel stations in Karnataka where petrol is cheaper by around ₹5 per litre and diesel by about ₹10 per litre.

Prices in BJP-ruled Goa, however, are cheaper compared to Karnataka.

Karnataka reduced value added tax (VAT) on petrol from 35% to 25.9% and on diesel from 24% to 14.34% resulting in a reduction of about ₹7 a litre for both fuels from November 4. Neighbouring States ruled by non-BJP parties did not reduce VAT as they want the Centre to further slash excise duties.

Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao argued that his government had not increased VAT for a long time and it was the Centre that had regularly hiked duties.

Sale triples

Yashodhar, who was operating Talapady Service Station of Indian Oil Corporation at Talapady in Dakshina Kannada district on the Kerala border, told The Hindu that sale of diesel has increased from about 3,000 litres a day to 11,000 litres, and that of petrol from 1,000 litres to about 4,000 litres.

Ganesh, a private bus conductor on Kasargod-Talapady route, said he saves close to ₹400 on filling 40 litres of diesel every day in Talapady instead of Kerala.

Ironically, a Bharat Petroleum Corporation outlet just across the border that had displayed a banner claiming fuel was cheaper in Kerala, removed the banner on November 4. Similar banners have now come up at fuel stations in Karnataka.

While petrol was sold at ₹99.9 per litre and diesel at ₹84.36 per litre in Talapady, the prices were ₹105.38 and ₹92.58, respectively, in Kasargod, Kerala as on November 11.

The prices in Belagavi were ₹100.03 and ₹84.79 as against ₹110.17 and ₹92.98 in Kolhapur, Maharashtra; ₹101.38 and ₹85.77 in Bidar against ₹108.18 and ₹94.61 in Hyderabad, Telangana; and ₹100.56 and ₹85 in Bengaluru against ₹103.58 and ₹92.61 in Dharmapuri, Tamil Nadu.


Production picks up

Coinciding with reduction of petrol and diesel retail prices in Karnataka, production of these fuel at Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals Ltd. (MRPL), which caters to major parts of Karnataka, has seen a jump.

The increase in production began on October 4, but the quantum has picked up in recent days. Production of petrol for domestic market witnessed about 30% increase to pre-COVID-19 days — from around 90,000 tonnes to around 1.3 lakh tonnes a month, said MRPL spokesperson Rudolph V.J. Noronha, while diesel production has reached pre-COVID-19 levels (about 3.3 lakh tonnes a month).

The 27 retail outlets of MRPL in Karnataka have reported a 10% increase in sales, Mr. Noronha added.

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Printable version | Jan 27, 2022 5:19:06 PM |

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