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Rediff.com  » Business » No plan of 12-hour curfew on sale of petrol: Moily

No plan of 12-hour curfew on sale of petrol: Moily

September 02, 2013 17:00 IST

No plan of 12-hour curfew on sale of petrol: Moily

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Petroleum Minister Veerappa Moily took a U-turn on the suggestion of keeping petrol pumps shut from 8 pm to 8 am.

Speaking to IBN18 Editor-in-Chief Rajdeep Sardesai, Moily said there has been no such proposal and the idea to keep petrol pumps open from 8 am to 8 pm was not the government's idea but it had come from the public.

"That's not my proposal, I don't know from where these proposals have come. People must be coining out ideas, that doesn't mean we have initiated the proposal, we have not conceived any such proposal," Moily said.

He said the government will announce austerity measures on September 16. "We are working on mega conservative measures, which will be launched on 16th," he said.

On the proposal to keep petrol pumps closed between 8 pm and 8 am...

That's not my proposal, I don't know from where these proposals have come. People must be coining ideas, but that doesn't mean we have initiated the proposal. We have not conceived any such proposals.

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Photographs: Reuters

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No plan of 12-hour curfew on sale of petrol: Moily

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On backtracking after there were fears that this proposal, if implemented, will lead to panic and hoarding of petrol

There is no proposal at all… There is no question of backtracking and we are working on a mega conservative measures, which will be launched on Sept 16th. But this proposal is not before us, I don’t know from where it has come.

This is all the ideas thrown by people...I never said this is part of our proposal. There is no question of my sending the proposal to FM or PM consequently there is no question of their rejecting it. I have not mooted this proposal at all.

On the mega fuel conservation drive from Sept 16th

That we are churning out the ideas and we are doing the brainstorming on these measures. I have not finalised it and it is only a very initial stage and I may only on 16th I will be announcing it.

But this closing of pumps is not part of the proposal. I can very well reiterate that even though crazy ideas come from everywhere, we keep our ears and eyes open... That’s all!

But at the same time we are not in a crisis, I am in a position to provide 24-hour oil in every corner and economy will not be affected. We are in a position to manage things.

Every Re 1 re depreciation to a dollar I lose around Rs 8,000 crore. That's a matter of concern.

Despite all these problems I am in a position to ensure that oil companies do function. There is no scarcity of oil and petroleum products. Our refineries are running well.

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Photographs: Reuters
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No plan of 12-hour curfew on sale of petrol: Moily

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On asking people of India to go for some kind of austerity

Ya, ya, that doesn't mean I am going to close the pumps at any time in the course of the day or night.

On if the govt is running out of options to control the oil pool deficit

No, no we are not running out of options. I've already worked out, the reduction of the oil import to the tune of Rs 19-20 crore.

I would like to go up to $25 billion. If we are in position to reduce $25 billion on petroleum products import, I will be contributing 1 per cent to the GDP.

On importing more oil from Iran

There are several measures; this is one part of it. We have been already importing this is not a new element.

If the US strikes Syria, global crude prices likely to rise further, putting more strain on the oil pool

We are not importing anything from Syria. Syrian conflict is a matter of concern because it will have an impact on the global oil price. But we have kept so many options open, so that our country will not face any crisis.

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Photographs: Reuters

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No plan of 12-hour curfew on sale of petrol: Moily

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You are saying you have kept so many options to control the oil pool deficit...give me one option

We are going for regressive deal with many countries also the nearer countries, so that our inventory can be maintained in a balance.

We are very confident... I will not allow any pump to close at any place in the country.

Enough petroleum products will be available at our pumps and rest of the places. We will definitely strengthen the economy of the country.

Can a govt afford to bite the bullet and raise oil prices further in an election year?

What will happen in future, I'm not in a position to tell today. Petroleum products have already been deregulated. It’s not for the government to give a call. That's how every month they do it.

So far as the diesel is concerned we have already said 45-50 paise, even today that is also done 45-50 paise.

I can’t say today if it will be increased in future. But we will be in a position to contain the economy so far as the oil sector is concerned.

I did not say about any price hike. When it comes to petroleum it is being calculated by the market price and they are doing it. I’ve not increased it.


Photographs: Reuters
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