Costlier vegetables and fruits, such as onions and tomatoes, drove retail inflation to 10.09% in October. The consumer price index (CPI) was last in the double digits seven months back.
The CPI was at 9.84% in September.
Vegetable prices rose 45.67% in October from a year earlier, compared with a 34.93% increase in the previous month, according to government data released today. Fruits became dearer by 12.84%.
CPI-based inflation remained in double digits for several months until March this year before it declined to 9.39% in April.
Inflation in the food and beverages segment was 12.56% in October compared to 11.44% in September.
High inflation spells bad news since it means the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) will hesitate to cut interest rates, a step needed to boost economic growth.
Consumers will have to keep paying large chunks of their income every month towards repaying housing loans, even as the cost of food and petrol rises and the prospect of decent salary hikes recedes because the economy is struggling.
The data showed that the corresponding provisional inflation rates for rural and urban areas for October were 10.11% and 10.20% respectively.
For CPI inflation, price data are collected from select towns by the National Sample Survey Organisation and from select villages by the Department of Posts.
Data on inflation based on the wholesale price index will be released later this week.
Last month, the Reserve Bank hiked the key lending rate (repo rate) by 0.25% to contain inflation in continuation of its hardline stance.