Petroleum Minister Hardeep Singh Puri on Thursday defended the government over the hike in fuel prices in the country, saying it is due to the increase in prices in the international market. He, however, assured that efforts are being made to make fuel available to people at ''affordable prices''.
Replying to a question in Lok Sabha, the minister said the prices of LNG in the international market has gone up by ''more than 37 per cent'' if compared from from April 2021 to February 2022, because of ''an unsettled condition and military action in one part of the world following the Covid crisis''.
''Whereas, our increase at the bunk has been only five per cent,'' he told the House during Question Hour.
As far as the LPG price, which are based on Saudi CP (Contract Price), is concerned, it has has gone up by 285 per cent from April 2020 to March 2022, and the hike has been 37 percent the the last six months alone, he said. ''So, I just want to place these facts before the members and this August House, so that they understand what the international situation today is,'' he said.
In spite of all that, the government is making ''every effort to make sure that the consumer at the point of consumption get fuel at an affordable price'', he added.
He said the it has always been government's endeavour to make available CNG at ''good affordable price'' to consumers. ''But, there is no reduction in taxes,'' Congress member Shashi Tharoor pointed out as he rose to ask a question soon after Puri answered the question of a BJP member.
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