The government has raised the price of CNG by Rs11.58, POL by Rs8.02 and diesel by Rs4.70 per litre. It will take days for the shock to be fully absorbed but it is going to tighten the inflationary screw at a time when the country is already crippled by the worst power outages in its history; and power-related riots are a daily occurrence. Everything is going to cost more — and very soon. The revised price of petrol for April will be Rs105.68 per litre while the price of high speed diesel (HSD), the most widely consumed petroleum fuel, has been raised to Rs108.16 and HOBC price to Rs135.81 — an increase of Rs8.94 per litre. This after the special committee formed by the prime minister had decided to keep diesel rates unchanged till June. Federal Minister for Water and Power Naveed Qamar had also said that the government had decided to provide eight billion as subsidy on diesel to maintain its price at the existing level, and in March the government even gave a Rs1.8 billion subsidy. But to everyone’s surprise, April 1 saw the government not only refusing to provide the subsidy but also increasing the price of HSD. As things stand now, the prices of all major fuel items have crossed the Rs100 mark. Nothing less than another deadly spate of inflation awaits us in the months ahead.
Except for the human life, everything has become expensive here.
— Josue de Castro