He said that if the federal government distributed more gas, consumers in the city would be paying at least 41% less than the present rates which are the highest in India.
Ashok Panjabi, president of the Gujarat Auto Rickshaw Driver Action Committee, welcomed the development and gave an assurance to this correspondent that his 100,000 members in Ahmedabad, 60,000 in Surat and 50,000 in Vadodara would reduce auto fares once the CNG prices were cut.
Auto drivers in the city have gone on a flash strike at least five times this year to protest high CNG rates.
Natural gas allocation has been a bone of contention between the BJP government in Gujarat and Centre's Congress-led UPA government for the past five years. The Centre has been arguing that Gujarat has been allocated adequate natural gas but it is diverting it to the industrial users.
Also, the federal administration is critical of Gujarat for levying the highest 15% value added tax (VAT) on natural gas trade in the country. Gujarat accounts for one-third India's natural gas consumption.
Expensive imported natural gas coupled with higher VAT has made Gujarat's natural gas market most expensive in the country.