Empowered Ministers' Group to meet on fuel price

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New Delhi, June 7 (ANI): The Empowered Group of Ministers (EGoM), which is headed by Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee, will meet today to consider the Kirit Parikh Committee report for freeing petrol and diesel prices from government control.

The group is also expected to move towards gradual removal of a controls on diesel and cooking gas (LPG) prices.

The EGoM will have to raise the price of petrol by at least Rs. 3.35 per litre and that of diesel by at least Rs. 3.49 a litre to free them from government control.

Petrol in Delhi currently costs Rs. 47.93 a litre, while diesel is Rs. 38.10 a litre.

"This is a very opportune moment to free prices of petrol and diesel. While petrol prices can be raised by Rs three a litre to link it to market (pricing), in the case of diesel, the excise duty can be reduced to the tune of underrecovery, so that prices at the retail level remain unchanged," said Parikh.

The report, given in February, suggested market-linked prices for petrol and diesel, a partial increase of Rs 6 a litre for kerosene and Rs 100 on every cylinder of LPG. It also proposed a reduction in kerosene sold through ration cards by 20 per cent.

Besides Mukherjee, the EGoM also includes Oil Minister Murli Deora, Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar, Chemical and Fertiliser Minister M.K. Alagiri, Railway Minister Mamata Banerjee, Road Transport Minister Kamal Nath and Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia. (ANI)

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