The government made the biggest ever payment for oil bonds this year

Mumbai. The bonds were issued by the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government to keep fuel prices low in the country. These bonds have become a matter of contention for successive governments today. Bonds are currently the subject of much political controversy. The BJP-led (NDA) government blamed the UPA government for the high tax on fuel. Many ministers of the ruling party have blamed the previous government for this.

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With petrol and diesel prices hovering above Rs 100 per liter in most parts of the country, the government has come under pressure to reduce excise duty. Therefore, the government has decided to increase the price of petrol from Rs 5 to Rs 2.5 per liter and that of diesel by Rs 5 per litre. has been reduced from 10 to 21.5. Subsequently, most states reduced their taxes on petrol and diesel. The outstanding on oil bonds was Rs 1.50 lakh crore by the end of March 31 this year. This year the debt burden has come down to Rs 1.5 lakh crore from Rs 5,000 crore repaid in two tranches on October 16 and November 9.

The next payment for the oil bonds will be on November 10, 206 and the amount is Rs 21,150 crore. Now, if its interest expense is taken into account, this amount is the first attempt to reduce the outstanding balance of oil bonds from the current Rs 10,000 crore. As a result, its debt will come down to Rs 1.5 lakh crore. After that an amount of Rs 30.3.5 crore will have to be given in 206-2. This includes both principal and interest. As a result, the Center will have to pay less interest on oil bonds in the coming years. Worryingly, interest rates were very high when oil bonds were issued.

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According to RTI, the interest rate on these oil bonds ranges from 7.5 per cent to 7.5 per cent. The Center has also been able to generate huge revenue from excise duty this year, which has helped it pay off the bonds. During the first three months of the current financial year, it earned Rs. The total revenue from excise duty for the financial year 2020-21 stood at Rs 4.5 lakh crore. As per the revenue sharing agreement between the Center and the states, 51 per cent of the excise duty collection goes to the state. Despite these payments, the central government still has to pay a higher amount on oil bonds.

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