Knock-knock… knock-knock

Voice behind the door: “Who’s there?”

The voice knocking: “Breaking news! Please open!”

Voice behind the door: “I think I know who you are! You must be some bad news regarding rise in petrol and diesel prices, so go get lost!”

Well! Today, if you are in India and especially in the big cities like Delhi or Mumbai then probably, you know what the true definition of bad news is. It’s, more often than not, that very news that would give the working classes, if not necessarily the rich elite, heartaches. Call it a recurring phenomenon if you like.

To a country where each day lived well could so often mean ‘survived’ if you are in big (but beautiful) but nasty cities like Delhi and Mumbai, this bad news comes in the form of a rise in petrol and diesel prices.

So you totally got it right if you feel that that among the items of breaking news from India today is actually regarding the rise in petrol and diesel prices in Delhi and Mumbai.

What can one do without it- absolutely nothing? What else, but to persevere and continue the same rut, one thinks. So let’s get to the bottom of this.

On January 26, 2021, when much of the world was busy reflecting on what have been 72 transformative years of India being a Republic, there were some in Delhi and Mumbai who, it could be said, may have been contemplating about something else.

And this was the familiar arrival of a bad news on one’s doorsteps. It’s not for the first time in the last few months that the devil reoccurred on one’s doorsteps actually.

In the national capital Delhi, the petrol and diesel prices crossed the Rs 86 and Rs 76-per liter mark.

But there’s something more conniving about this price than one would note. This new increase in the petrol and diesel prices has been the highest in the one last year.

Not that Delhi was the only city that went under the familiar hammer, one that causes pain and agony in equal amounts. In Mumbai, the petrol price per liter reached 92.62 mark. And where the diesel price was concerned, then the same in Mumbai crossed Rs 83.03 mark.

petrol and diesel price hike
Image Source: Bloomberg Quint

The above development, there are no real surprises, points out the fact that the fuel prices in the mega cities of India are at an all-time high. What can be done? Are better days ahead of us? Who knows? What one does know is that the following excerpts emerged from a report published on media like Bloomberg Quint that captured the insights of the Oil Minister:

Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan last week blamed Saudi oil output cut for the surge in oil prices but remained non-committal on tax cuts. Top oil explorer Saudi Arabia has pledged additional voluntary output cuts of 1 million barrels per day in February and March, which has led to price climbing to the highest since the pandemic outbreak. State-owned fuel retailers — Indian Oil Corporation Ltd.

Also Read: Which Two States Are The Biggest Contributors To India’s COVID-19 Cases?

Now that all of this seems to be clearly pointing to a major development taken by Saudi Arabia, what still remains to be answered is – what does the common man do with what some oil-rich kingdom have to do? When can the government step in to take cognizance of the situation? If not, then are we to think that the salaried class, working population of this country- for whom every penny saved is a penny earned- will continue to trot under pressure?

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