New Delhi. Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman gave the reason for not cutting the skyrocketing prices of petrol and diesel. He said that the previous Congress government (UPA government) is responsible for the skyrocketing fuel prices. On Monday 16 August, the Finance Minister said that the previous UPA government had issued oil bonds, due to which it is not possible to reduce oil prices.
Fuel rates are not coming down due to oil bonds
According to the Finance Minister, the government has to pay for these bonds. Between 2005 and 2010, the then UPA government at the Center issued oil bonds to oil companies. The advantage of this was that the then government did not have to give cash subsidy to the companies and it was to be paid in installments over the next several years.
Know what are oil bonds
Oil bonds are a kind of special securities, which are given by the government to oil marketing companies like Hindustan Petroleum, Indian Oil, Bharat Petroleum in lieu of cash subsidy, so that the burden of expensive oil does not fall on the public. Oil bonds have a longer maturity period like 15 to 20 years. Oil companies are also paid interest on these bonds.
Oil bonds worth Rs 1.44 lakh crore issued
Finance Minister Sitharaman said that the UPA government had issued oil bonds worth 1.44 lakh crores. The outstanding dues of oil bonds in 2014-15 stood at Rs 1.34 lakh crore. The arrears of interest payment in 2014-15 was Rs.10255 crore. The Modi government made 70,195 crores. Interest has been paid. Along with this, the Modi government has paid the principal amount of 3500 crores. By 2026, the government has to pay 37000 crores of interest. By 2026, the government has to give Rs 1.30 lakh crore of the principal amount.
On this, Congress general secretary Randeep Surjewala says that oil bonds worth Rs 1.3 lakh crore are not due for payment for so long and the government has mobilized many times compared to this in the last seven years.