Petrol crisis persists in Pokhara

Pokhara, October 26:

A shortage of petrol and LPG persists here even after the hike in the prices of petroleum products. Most of the petrol pumps here are sporting ‘No petrol’ tags. Vehicle-owners queue up when they come across notices that state that petrol will be available in the evening.

Bed Kumari Gurung of the Naya Bazaar-based Brihaspati Oil Store says petrol should have been easily available by now.

Owner of the Nagdhunga-based Himalayan Petroleum Company is sure that petrol will be easily available in a few days.

One Subba Gurung, who came for petrol from Lakeside of Pokhara, said that the crisis has not eased. Daily demand of petrol in Pokhara sub-metropolis was 36,000 earlier.

The demand has doubled now and that is why consumers are finding it difficult to get petrol, said general secretary of the Dhaulagiri Petroleum Dealers’ Association Dilip Subedi. Loading of petroleum products began in Raxaul today and supplies will reportedly be smooth from Tuesday.

Owner of the Kamal Oil Stores Rudra Ghale feared that the consumers failing to get sufficient amount of petrol may get incensed. Ghale said that supply of diesel and kerosene is smooth.

According to Suraj Shah of Nepal Oil Corporation’s Gagangauda depot, 56,000 litres of petrol, 60,000 litres of diesel, and 12,000 litres of kerosene were brought into Pokhara yesterday, but these supplies could not meet the demand.

The supply situation will ease only after Monday or Tuesday, Shah further said. Meanwhile, consumers said LPG is not available in Pokhara even after the price hike.

One Manju Subedi of Pokhara Siddhartha Chowk said she could not buy cooking gas though she was willing to pay the hiked price. Manager at Shakti Gas depot Krishna Hari Bhandari said the market was hit by a shortage caused by panic buying.