With oil on the boil in global markets and both crude and product prices seeing a big spike, petrol and diesel prices continued to rise on Wednesday for the ninth consecutive day.
Petrol and diesel prices were hiked by 25 paise per litre each on Wednesday in Delhi, according to a price notification from oil marketing companies.
With this increase, petrol is now priced at Rs 89.54 a litre and diesel at Rs 79.95 a litre in Delhi.
In Mumbai, the petrol price is just Rs 4 short (Rs 96 a litre) of the three-digit mark for the very first time ever anywhere in the country. Diesel prices in the city are closing on Rs 90 a litre (Rs 86.98 a litre).
In all other metros, petrol is over Rs 90 a litre, while diesel is well over Rs 80 a litre, barring Delhi.
Petrol price in Kolkata was hiked to Rs 90.78 per litre from Rs 90.54, while diesel rate was raised to Rs 83.54 a litre from Rs 83.29.
In Chennai, petrol is retailing at Rs 91.68 a litre, while diesel price peaked to Rs 85.01 a litre.
The increase in petrol and diesel prices have pushed retail rates, which differ from state to state depending on the local sales tax or VAT and freight charges, to their highest level.
The increase on Wednesday has followed firming global oil prices (both product and crude) that have maintained a record streak of gains in the past few days, with crude reaching over $63.24 a barrel mark (single-day gain over 2 per cent).
But experts said that fresh lockdown in various parts of the globe owing to the new coronavirus strain may impact demand and push prices down soon. Also, Saudi Arabia's unilateral production cuts may also be withdrawn post March, putting downward pressure on oil prices.
The petrol and diesel prices have increased 20 times in 2021 with rates of the two auto fuels increasing by Rs 5.58 and Rs 5.83 per litre respectively so far this year.
The last few increases in pump prices of petrol and diesel have taken their rates to record levels across the country in all major metros and other towns. The last time the retail prices of auto fuels were close to the current levels was on 4 October 2018 when crude prices had shot up to $80 a barrel.
(With inputs from agencies)