With inflation reaching double digits in Pakistan, the caretaker government has once again increased the prices of petrol and diesel. After the prices of these petroleum products reached record levels, opposition parties have started protesting. This decision of the caretaker government has also been challenged in the Lahore High Court. After getting the approval of Caretaker Prime Minister Anwarul Haq Kakar, the Finance Ministry on Friday night issued an order to increase the price of petrol by Rs 26.02 and diesel by Rs 17.34 per liter. After this, the prices of petrol and ‘high-speed’ diesel (HSD) have increased by more than Rs 330 per liter.
Earlier on September 1, the caretaker government had increased the prices of petrol and diesel by about Rs 14 per liter. Since the formation of the caretaker government in the country last month, the prices of petrol and diesel have increased by 20 percent. In Pakistan, since August 15, the price of petrol has increased by Rs 32.14 per liter while the price of diesel has increased by Rs 38.49 per liter. Newspaper ‘Dawn’ said that the prices of petrol and diesel reaching Rs 330 per liter is like breaking of a psychological barrier. The hike in fuel prices comes after inflation rose by more than 27.4 percent in August. After the increase in the prices of petrol and diesel, the opposition parties are strongly opposing it.
According to the website of ‘Dunya News’ channel, Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) has announced to protest outside the houses of the governors in all the four provinces of Pakistan, protesting against the huge increase in petroleum prices. JI chief Sirajul Haq said that the government has made the life of the common man miserable by increasing petroleum prices on the instructions of the International Monetary Fund (IMF). Grand Democratic Alliance chief Sardar Abdul Rahim said the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM)’s agreement with the IMF ‘has proved fatal for the country’s economy.’ This channel said in another report that a lawyer named Azhar Siddiqui in Lahore has filed an application against this decision in Lahore High Court and the caretaker federal government has been made a party.
The petition said that till now there was no system to determine the prices of products and the increase in the prices of petroleum products will now increase inflation further. Earlier, the Finance Ministry had attributed the revision in current consumer prices of petroleum products to ‘increasing trend of petroleum prices in the international market’. The increase in prices of these petroleum products twice in a fortnight will increase the economic burden on the people of Pakistan. Petrol and HSD are used by all private and public service vehicles.