Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in a series of tweets on Saturday announced several measures to curb inflation, most notably being the cut in excise duty in petrol and diesel by Rs 8 per litre and Rs 6 per litre respectively.
“We are reducing the Central excise duty on Petrol by Rs 8 per litre and on Diesel by Rs 6 per litre. This will reduce the price of petrol by Rs 9.5 per litre and of Diesel by Rs 7 per litre. It will have revenue implication of around Rs1 lakh crore/year for the government,” tweeted Sitharaman.
She then urged all state governments, especially the states where reduction wasn’t done during the last round (November 2021), to also implement a similar cut and give relief to the common man.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi said, “It is always people first for us! Today’s decisions, especially the one relating to a significant drop in petrol and diesel prices will positively impact various sectors, provide relief to our citizens and further ‘Ease of Living.’
Sitharaman further added that this year, the government will give a subsidy of Rs 200 per gas cylinder (up to 12 cylinders) to over 9 crore beneficiaries of Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana.
“Ujjwala Yojana has helped crores of Indians, especially women. Today’s decision on Ujjwala subsidy will greatly ease family budgets,” Modi said.
Among other measures, to cushion farmers from inflationary pressures, she said that in addition to the fertilizer subsidy of Rs 1.05 lakh crore in the budget, an additional amount of Rs 1.10 lakh crore is being provided for them.
She also announced a reduction in the customs duty on raw materials and intermediaries for plastic products where India’s import dependence is high.
“This will result in reduction of cost of final products,” she said.
On similar lines, she informed that the government is calibrating customs duty on raw materials and intermediaries for iron and steel to reduce their prices.
“Import duty on some raw materials of steel will be reduced. Export duty on some steel products will be levied,” she added.
She also said that measures are being taken up to improve the availability of cement through better logistics to reduce its cost.
April saw India’s wholesale and consumer prices accelerate at their fastest in years, prompting the central bank to hike interest rates at an unscheduled policy meeting this month.