Ne‎w Delhi: Petrol and diesel prices in the country touched their highest levels today mainly due to a dramatic fall in the rupee and a sharp rise in crude oil rates. Petrol prices in Delhi rose to a record 79.15 a litre and diesel climbed to a fresh high of 71.15, according to price notification by state-owned fuel retailers.

Rates have breached the previous high of 78.43 a litre hit on 28 May. On that day, the rate in Mumbai was 86.24 per litre. A litre of petrol in Mumbai cost 86.56 today. Prices in Delhi are the cheapest in all metros and most state capitals due to lower sales tax or value added tax (VAT).

Diesel rates on Monday were hiked by 39 paise a litre, the steepest increase since the daily revision in prices was introduced in mid-June 2017. Diesel now costs 75.54 per litre in Mumbai.

Since 16 August, petrol prices have risen by over 2 per litre. Diesel prices have risen by 2.42 a litre during this period.

Diesel rates had hit 69.31 a litre on 28 May, but this record was breached on 27 August. On Monday, they hit a fresh high. Fuel prices vary from state to state due to local levies.

Officials said the spike in rates was on account of the rupee falling to a record 71 to a dollar, a fall of 2.5 to a dollar in a month. Also, crude oil has gained $7 a barrel in a fortnight, driven by fears that the US sanctions on Iran will likely contract supplies.

The dollar appreciation has also pushed up rates for compressed natural gas (CNG) as well as piped natural gas (PNG) since the price of gas procured by city distributors is mostly dollar-denominated.

Indraprastha Gas Ltd, which retails gas in the national capital, on Sunday raised the prices of CNG by 63 paise per kg and by 1.11 per standard cubic metre for piped natural gas supplied to households.

CNG now costs 42.60 per kg in Delhi and 49.30 per kg in Noida, Greater Noida and Ghaziabad. The consumer price of PNG to households in Delhi has been increased to 28.25 per scm, while the price in Noida, Greater Noida and Ghaziabad will be 30.10 per scm.