WE ALL know the critical role played by oil and gas in the economic development of a country. Fuels such as PDS kerosene and domestic LPG are essential commodities, next only to food, and impact the life of common man in a major way. Therefore, managing the supplies and prices of sensitive petroleum products is a key policy issue for the government.

AFTER several rounds of deliberations on raising auto fuel prices, the government finally decided to bite the bullet. Despite the Left's opposition it has raised petrol and diesel prices by Rs 2/litre and Re 1/litre, respectively, from February 15. The current price of petrol in Delhi is Rs 45.52/litre (from the earlier price of Rs 43.52/litre) and diesel is Rs 31.76/litre (from Rs 30.48/litre).