Assam residents flock to border town of Bhutan for cheap fuel

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GUWAHATI, May 5: At a time when rising prices of petrol and diesel are burning a hole in the pockets of people across the country, those living close to the Bhutan border in Assam have found out a novel way of negotiating the price pinch.
Every morning, hundreds of bikers and motorists hit the NH-127D that connects Assam with Bhutan’s eastern border town of Samdrup Jongkhar to tank up and also grab some liquor on their way back. For, both the commodities come at dirt cheap prices just across the friendly border that has no immigration barrier.
Ganesh Boro, a teacher of a government school at Tamulpur in Assam’s Baksa district, is a regular at one of the Indian Oil fuel outlets at Samdrup Jhongkhar. “I have to travel 22 km one way to fill up the tank of my motorcycle. It lasts me for about a month. Last month, I purchased petrol at Rs 52/litre. Back home in Assam, I would have to shell out Rs 76 for a litre and so and it’s worth travelling 44 km (to and fro),” he said. A litre of diesel, which comes for Rs 65 in Assam, costs nearly Rs 20 less there, he added. (TNN)