The price has been lowered on occasion of the so-called ”ASUS Days”. The price cut is INR 8000, lowering the phone’s cost to INR 21,999, a much more reasonable price than the old 29.999. Both 6GB/128GB and 8GB/256GB RAM and space variants’ prices have been dropped.
By the way, ZenFone 5Z in Taiwan has recently received an OS update to Android 9 Pie. Indian update might not be far behind.