On Wednesday, fuel prices in India touched new all-time highs as international crude oil prices continued to climb.
Petrol rates per litre rose to Rs 86.30 in New Delhi, Rs 87.69 in Kolkata, Rs 92.86 in Mumbai and Rs 88.82 in Chennai.
Diesel rates per litre increased to Rs 76.48 in New Delhi, Rs 80.08 in Kolkata, Rs 83.30 in Mumbai and Rs 81.71 in Chennai.
Retail prices of fuel in India are revised on a daily basis based on fluctuations in international crude oil prices and rupee's exchange value. Crude oil prices rose on Wednesday after industry data showed US crude stockpiles fell unexpectedly last week and China, the world's second-biggest oil user, reported its lowest daily rise in COVID-19 cases, bolstering hopes of a pick-up in demand.
The international benchmark, Brent crude futures climbed 11 cents or 0.2%, to $56.02 a barrel, adding to a small gain made on Tuesday.
State-owned oil marketers in India have hiked petrol prices by Rs 2.59 a litre and diesel Rs 2.61 a litre in January, in Delhi.
After the spike in rates that have pushed prices to new all-time highs for the first time since 2018 (when international prices were looming near $80 a barrel), there have been speculations that ministry of petroleum and natural gas had requested the finance ministry to cut taxes on the fuels, which were hiked after COVID-19 related lockdown. Media reports suggest that the government is yet to take a call on tax cuts.
After the nationwide lockdown, central government taxes on petrol and diesel have been raised by Rs 13 and Rs 16, respectively, as special excise duty and road & infrastructure cess.