Petrol pumps bonanza: Dealers to move court

Mumbai: Barely 72 hours after the Centre announced a pre-election bonanza of distributing a staggering 55,649 new petrol pumps in the country, the apex body of their dealers plan to challenge the move in court, a top office-bearer said here on Wednesday.

The All India Petrol Dealers Association (AIPDA) President Ajay Bansal said that the government’s latest move (of November 25) appeared contrary to its own policy and the dealers would question its legal validity.

“On one hand, the Centre has announced the closure of petrol pumps in India replacing them with alternative fuels by 2025. But, now they are publishing advertisements for allotting the second string of new petrol pumps. So what exactly is this policy?” Bansal said.

Presently, India has 56,000 retail petrol bunks of the three government oil marketing companies — Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd (BPCL), Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd (HPCL), and Indian Oil Corporation Ltd (IOCL), besides another 6,000 outlets owned by private companies.

From these fuel stations, the average monthly sales for the three Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) are between 120-130 kilolitre with an average increase in demand on petrol-diesel of around four percent per annum.