Union Minister of State for Petroleum and Natural Gas Rameswar Teli has said that free COVID-19 vaccines provided by the Prime Minister-led central government have led to the hike in fuel prices.
"Fuel prices aren't high but include the tax levied. You must've taken a free vaccine, where will the money come from? You haven't paid the money, this is how it was collected," news agency ANI quoted Teli as saying.
He also compared the rising price of petrol with that of packaged mineral water and said that the price of such water is more.
"The price of petrol is not high, there is tax involved in it. The price of (packaged mineral) water is higher than that of fuel. The price of petrol is Rs 40, the Assam government imposes Rs 28 VAT, the petroleum Ministry imposes Rs 30, it becomes Rs 98. But if you drink Himalaya water, then the cost of a bottle is Rs.100. The cost of water is more, not of oil," he said.
Reacting to the MoS' statement, former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah said: "It would have been cheaper for all of us if you’d just charged us for the vaccines instead of recouping the cost of the vaccines through fuel price hikes."
Meanwhile, Petrol and diesel prices continued their upward trend for the seventh consecutive day on Monday.Prices of petrol and diesel rose by Rs 0.30 (Rs 104.44/litre) and Rs 0.35 (Rs 93.17/litre) respectively in Delhi.In Mumbai, petrol was priced at Rs 110.41/litre (up by Rs 0.29) and diesel costs Rs 101.03/litre (up by Rs 0.37) on Monday.