NEW DELHI: After big cuts in petrol and diesel prices following the Centre and states reducing taxes, fuel prices have remained unchanged providing further relief to consumers. Accordingly, petrol and diesel prices remained unchanged for the third consecutive day on Sunday under the daily price revision mechanism followed by oil marketing companies. So, the pump price of petrol in Delhi, which fell to Rs 103.97 a litre at 6 a.m. on Thursday from previous days level of Rs 110.04 a litre, remains at the same level onSunday. The diesel prices also remained unchanged in the capital at Rs 86.67 a litre. In the financial capital Mumbai, petrol continues to be priced at Rs 109.98 a litre and diesel Rs 94.14 a litre. Prices also remained static on Sunday in Kolkata where the price of petrol reduced by Rs 5.82 to Rs 104.67 per litre and that of diesel by Rs 11.77 to Rs 89.79 per litre on the previous day. Petrol price in Chennai also remains at Rs 101.40 per litre and diesel Rs 91.43 per litre. Across the country as well price of the fuel largely remained unchanged on Sunday barring a few states where VAT reduction would translate into lower prices from Sunday. The good news on the fuel price front is that global crude prices have softened to around $82 a barrel now from a three year high level of over $85 a barrel just a few days back. If the price line holds, fuel prices in India could come down further and increases could be checked. Before price cuts and pause, diesel prices have increased on 30 out of the last 44 days taking up its retail price by Rs 9.90 per litre in Delhi. Petrol prices have also risen 28 of the previous 40 days taking up its pump price by Rs 8.85 per litre. Since January 1, petrol and diesel prices have risen by more than Rs 26 a litre before the duty cuts. The excise duty cut by the Centre is the first such exercise since the onset of Covid pandemic. In fact, the government had revised excise duty on petrol and diesel sharply in March and again in May last year to mobilise additional resources for Covid relief measures. The excise duty was raised by Rs 13 and Rs 16 per litre on petrol and diesel between March 2020 and May 2020 and was standing high at Rs 31.8 on diesel and Rs 32.9 per litre on petrol before finally the Centre decided on duty cut.

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