Ravi Shinde: If petrol comes under GST prices will go down to Rs 60 per litre
President of petrol pump owners, Ravi Shinde shares insights on how to lower the prices of petrol and diesel, in a chat with Radio City RJs Archana and Karan
Over the course of the last few months, the price of petrol and diesel have continued to soar steadily. Fuel prices in the country hit a new benchmark at the end of September, with the price of petrol crossing Rs 90 per litre, for the first time ever. Radio City's RJ Archana and RJ Karan chatted to Ravi Shinde, President of petrol pump owners with regards to the rising prices of petrol and diesel in the state
Illustration/ Ravi Jadhav
Here's an excerpt from the interview:
How is your life going on these days amidst the high rising prices of petrol in Mumbai and especially in the state of Maharashtra?
There’s is no need to call. When I reach office there are already customers waiting in the office with a lot of questions regarding the rising prices of petrol and diesel in Mumbai and the state of Maharashtra. Customers are also worried that whether the prices of petrol are going to reach 100 Rs. Prabhani and Nanded in Maharashtra are the two places in Maharashtra where the prices of petrol have already crossed 90 Rs. Due to some transportation rate that is added over at the two places which is why the prices of petrol have crossed 90 Rs. These transportation prices are not added in the city of Mumbai which is why we haven’t seen the prices of petrol touching Rs 90 as yet in Mumbai. But Mumbai will catch up with the price of 90 Rs very shortly.
Have the crude prices increased in the international market that we are seen such a high increase in the prices of petrol in India and especially Maharashtra?
If you see the trend it's not only about crude prices but even the price of US dollars has already crossed 72 Rs. Crude prices and the prices of dollars are both interrelated and interlinked. Which is why we are seeing a high increase in the prices of Petrol. Inching forward, according to me from the last month till now the prices of petrol have increased by 5 to 6 percent which now will now increase very slowly. We are hoping that the price of petrol rise slowly and steadily and not as the rate at which it is increasing. If you notice the bigger factor for the rapid increase in the prices of petrol is due to the taxes.
People are saying that petrol and diesel should not come under the bracket of GST?
Why it shouldn't come under the bracket of GST? Tell me one reason why the crude prices should not be included under GST. If the crude prices are under the bracket of GST then only will the prices of petrol will be universal across India and its states. One Nation One Tax. And due to it being under the GST bracket there will be some sense in it or else there will be added drought cess. When the ban of liquor took place the tax that was added that time that is still existing. But what we are not understanding that why the government in Maharashtra is not bringing crude prices under the GST bracket as the cess and all that is levied on crude prices will be removed.
Do your relatives come to you asking for discounts on petrol and diesel if they are ready to buy the crude in bulk??
Even they know what situation we are going through. We are just facing this situation but it has been done and dusted somewhere else. Although we are selling petrol and diesel, the only problem that we are facing is that today we have become the biggest tax collector of the nation. And then we, of course, sell petrol and diesel. If petrol comes under the GST bracket then one needs not worry or ask for discounts on petrol. If petrol comes under the 28 percent slab of GST then the prices of petrol will go down to 60 Rs per litre.
Why aren’t we applying GST in anything and everything? How much time it will take to bring GST into working?
Firstly it's about having the political will; here the state government pinpoints at the central government and the centre says that the state government is not ready to bring in GST and that they will pick up the matter in GST council. We have been listening to this for the past few years. When is the government going to take a decision? When they have to levy taxes the government takes no time and the decision is quick and implemented as well. But to take a decision on GST why is the government taking ample amount of time and delaying it. When the rates of petrol and diesel increase it's all about the percentage of the VAT that is applied on crude prices. The percentage of VAT also goes up so this becomes an unintended windfall. The excise that is levied by the central government is on per litre of crude oil. Which means whatever is the prices of petrol or diesel that amount of excise is only applied to it. But on the other hand, the VAT is increasing on a daily basis and at a rapid rate.
Have you switched to any alternatives (walking, stopped using vehicles etc) due to the high prices of petrol and diesel?
The most affected are the two-wheelers and its owners. You will not believe the same biker comes to fill petrol twice and thrice in a day. If he puts petrol for 50 Rs or 100 Rs then it gets over in no time and again he visits the petrol pump to fill the petrol. So, the middle-class people are the most affected by the hike in crude prices.
If the public starts using less petrol and diesel is there a possibility that the prices of crude oil will go down?
Today filling petrol and diesel have become a necessity as people have to go to the office, do their work and do their duties as well. Even if the demand for petrol and diesel goes down the prices of them will not steep low or come drastically down. The prices of crude oil will be the same and same taxes will still be applicable. The value of Rs is also going down so, looking at all of these factors even if the demand becomes low then the prices of crude oil will also not become less.
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