The petroleum sector has extended big support to the revenue starved government preventing it from wide slippages on the revenue in a pandemic affected year.
The Centre’s total revenue (tax and non tax, and after adjusting state’s share in central taxes) for financial year 2020-21 stood at Rs 16,32,094, crore a marginal 3.09 fall over the non-Covid year 2019-20 when total revenue stood at Rs 16,84,059 crore.
Had it not been for a substantial jump in Centre’s excise duty collections (almost entirely coming from taxes on petrol and diesel), Covid-triggered economic disruptions would have put given a big hit to government revenues.
The total excise duty collection of the Centre in FY21 stood at Rs 3,89,662 crore, a massive 61.94 per cent jump over excise collections of Rs 2,40,615 crore in the previous year. The big jump in collections came as Government raised excise duty on petrol and diesel by Rs 12 and Rs 9 per litre in May 2020 to mobilise additional resources for expenditure on Covid-relief programmes.
Higher taxes on auto fuel has meant while the consumers suffer due to rising retail prices of petrol and diesel, government is counting its rising revenue from sector. Sources said that a duty relief at this juncture could have prevented consumers from paying over Rs 100 a litre price for petrol and diesel.
Taxes make up for around 55 per cent of the present retail price of petrol of Rs 101.84 a litre in Delhi. Excise duty makes up for 32 per cent of the retail price.
Excise duty on petrol has been raised from Rs 9.48 per litre in 2014 to Rs 32.90 a litre now while the same on diesel has gone up from Rs 3.56 a litre to Rs 31.80.
The collections on petrol and diesel rose to Rs 3,71,726 crore in FY21.
In a reply to a question in Parliament, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman while giving details of revenue figures said that the government has taken many steps to boost both direct and indirect tax revenue collection, through curbing tax evasion, widening/deepening of tax base, promoting voluntary compliance, reducing litigation and promoting digital transaction.