26th Jun 2020 10:06:PM Editorials
Eastern Sentinel Arunachal News

It started on June 7 and since then the run has been unbeatable. For 20 consecutive days fuel prices have been on the rise creating newer records and escalating the economic miseries of the common people already under deep distress due to the pandemic and its partner, the lockdown. It seems that the authorities are too engrossed in dealing with much weightier issues like China and Corona and as such, a ‘trifle’ matter like oil price hike is too unqualified to receive any serious attention. Meanwhile, the common man continues to suffer silently and an attempt to predict an end of this ‘onward march’ will be rather risky, just the way it has been with coronavirus in the country, whose behavioural pattern is still to be satisfactorily decoded.

Coming to the figures, after successive hike in prices, the cumulative effect turns out to be additions of Rs 8.81 and Rs 10.80 for petrol and diesel respectively per litre over the June 7 price and on Friday, in most cities petrol crossed Rs 80 per litre mark, the first to happen in more than 2 years. There is a general theoretical conception that oil prices in India more or less have a direct relationship with global oil prices since there is an overwhelming dependency on its import and the easy calculation is that if prices fall overseas, the same is supposed to get reflected in the country and vice versa. But, in actual terms, when the international oil prices tumble, passing on the direct benefits to the consumers is only a few and far between affair and such ‘fortunes’, to tell facts, are only occasional. This is since, almost simultaneously to the drop of international prices, fresh taxes or levies are imposed by the government as the most-preferred practice to garner extra revenue and as such, actual benefits are hardly enjoyed by the consumers. This has remained an annual exercise over the years and the current rise in petrol and diesels are just the same old phenomenon. It will be worthwhile to recall that in March end even when there was a record fall in global oil prices, hardly any benefit was passed over to the citizens. The current international price scenario is also nothing excessively disconcerting as prices are hovering around the normal ranges of 38-40 dollar per barrel. The real effect will be felt now as with the increase of freight charges the direct fallout will be on the prices of all essential commodities including food grains and perishables.

Allowing everything to take shape according to the ‘whims and fancies’ of the so-called market forces, in general, can’t be welcomed, since the country, officially at least, still follows the motto to give the first priority to people’s welfare.

Kenter Joya Riba

(Managing Editor)
      She is a graduate in Science with post graduation in Sociology from University of Pune. She has been in the media industry for nearly a decade. Before turning to print business, she has been associated with radio and television.
Email: kenterjoyaz@easternsentinel.in / editoreasternsentinel@gmail.com
Phone: 0360-2212313

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