While there has been a see-saw regarding the confirmation of whether diesel prices will go further north or not, Veerappa Moily, Oil Minister has confirmed that prices for the sticky fuel will be hiked by 40-50 paise/litre every month. This will continue till oil marketing companies wipe off their losses. It is said that diesel is currently being retailed at approximately a loss of Rs 11/litre. On January 17, the Indian government had asked state-owned oil firms to levy a price hike on diesel till the time they cover their losses. This deregulation resulted in the companies hiking diesel prices by 45 paise. In addition to this, bulk customers like public transport undertakings, defence and railways are being made to pay almost Rs 10 more per litre than what is the retail price. Moily says that he has heard of several state governments asking their fleets to refuel at regular petrol pumps instead of the designated oil supplying firm to avoid the price hike. In his opinion, instead of asking them to find another way of avoiding taxes, the state government should reduce the VAT or local taxes so that diesel prices automatically drop. He however said that they wouldn’t be allowed to get an upper hand and the matter is being investigated.