It is likely to be extended to entire country from October

The Petroleum and Natural Gas Ministry on Wednesday announced that the Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) scheme for the LPG consumers, putting subsidy cash directly into the account of beneficiaries, would be launched in 20 districts with high Aadhaar card penetration from June 1. The scheme is likely to be extended to the entire country from October this year.

However, the catch in the DBT is that from June 1, Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) consumers would be given a grace period of three months to not only get a Aadhaar number but also get it seeded it with their bank account and then in turn register the same with the oil marketing companies (OMCs) to ensure that the Rs. 4000 per year subsidy amount for the nine subsidised cylinders is deposited directly into the bank accounts of the LPG consumers. However, those who fail to get a Aadhaar number or do not get it seeded with the bank account will not get the subsidy after expiry of the three-month period and will have to buy all the domestic LPG at the market rate.

Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister, Veerappa Moily said the scheme was aimed to curb leakages and prevent black-marketing.

“The LPG consumers are advised to get an Aadhaar number if they don’t have one at Aadhaar enrolment centres. Then they will have to open a bank account with Aadhaar number if they do not have one by going to a bank branch. And if they already have a bank account then they should link their Aadhaar number with their bank account by visiting their branch and then provide Aadhaar numbers to the LPG distributors for linking with the LPG consumer number,” he said.

He said for the benefit of the LPG consumers, the OMCs were provided the facility on their websites to check whether the Aadhaar number was attached to the LPG consumer number/bank account. He said those consumers who could not complete formalities by June 1, the government was giving a grace period of three months to complete the formalities. Mr. Moily said all the Aadhaar linked domestic LPG consumers would get an advance in their bank account as soon as they book the first subsidised cylinder even before delivery. This was to reduce their financial burden when they purchased the first cylinder after launch of scheme at market rate.

As soon as the first cylinder was delivered to such consumers, subsidy eligible on date of delivery would again get credited in the bank account, which would then be available for the purchase of the next cylinder at market rate. Thus, subsidy eligible on each such domestic cylinder, up to the cap of 9 cylinders per year would be directly transferred to the Aadhaar- enabled bank account of the consumer.

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