New Delhi, March 15 (IANS) After the government raised the excise duty on petrol and diesel by Rs 3 a litre, which would increase their retail prices by Rs 3-4 a litre, depending on the tax structure in different states, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi here on Sunday said the government should have passed on the benefit of falling crude oil rates to consumers instead of filling its coffers.
"Just 3 days ago I had requested @PMOIndia to pass on the benefit of the global oil price crash to Indian consumers, by slashing the prices of petrol & diesel. Instead of heeding this advice, our genius has gone and hiked #exciseduty on fuel," Rahul Gandhi tweeted.
The Congress has alleged the total incidence of excise duty on petrol has risen to Rs 22.98 a litre and that on diesel to Rs 18.83 a litre. "The tax on petrol was Rs 9.48 a litre and on diesel was Rs 3.56 a litre when the Narendra Modi government took office in 2014," the Congress said.
The central excise duty had been hiked over a dozen times and by 149.78 per cent on petrol and 444.22 per cent on diesel since the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) came to power, it said.
Before May 2014, as the excise duty on petrol and diesel was Rs 9.2 a litre and Rs 3.46 a litre, respectively. After the BJP came to power it was increased to Rs 22.98 a litre and Rs 18.83 a litre, respectively.
The excise duty hike will help government garner Rs 45,000 crore for full year.
As per the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) notification, special duty on petrol and diesel has been hiked by Rs 2 to Rs 10 a litre and Rs 4 a litre, respectively. Road cess on them has also been raised by Re 1 to Rs 10 per litre, effectively increasing the central duty to Rs 3 a litre.
The new rates became effective on March 14.