Ration card holders will be given free gas connections in lieu of their kerosene quota

Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit on Tuesday distributed liquid petroleum gas (LPG) connection papers and stoves to 20 people at a function at Delhi Secretariat to mark the launch of a scheme that aims to make the Capital kerosene-free by December this year.

Under the scheme 3.56 lakh Antodaya Anna Yojana (AAY), Below Poverty Line (BPL) and Jhuggi Ration Card (JRC) holders would be provided a free gas connection and a stove in lieu of their kerosene quota.

Speaking at the function, in which the connections and stoves were later given away to 180 other applicants as well, Ms. Dikshit said the ambitious scheme would ensure a cleaner environment and also help the women who work in kitchen by providing them a smokeless fuel instead of kerosene which used to damage their eyes and lungs.

Pointing out that the scheme would also help do away with the siphoning off of the kerosene from the depots, the Chief Minister said it would also do away with the need for the card holders to visit the kerosene depots to procure their quota of fuel under the Public Distribution System.

Under the scheme, the Delhi Government would be providing a filled up LPG cylinder, regulator, gas stove, ‘suraksha’ tube and LPG connection papers to the senior most female member of the family among the AAY, BPL and JRC card holders. The three oil companies that supply LPG across the city would henceforth supply gas to these families as well.

As for the economics of the scheme, Ms. Dikshit said the Delhi Government would spend Rs.3,049 on each beneficiary. Out of this Rs.1,250 would go towards security money for LPG cylinders; Rs.150 towards security money for regulator; Rs.1,200 for gas stove with two burners and suraksha tube; Rs.50 for the blue book and other papers; and Rs.399 towards the cost of filled LPG cylinder.

The total financial implication of the programme would be Rs.108.66 crore out of which Rs.22.75 crore would be borne by the Union Government and Rs.85.91 crore by the Delhi Government.

The Delhi Government would be providing 50 per cent of LPG connection charges in respect of AAY and BPL card holders and 100 per cent of the charges in respect of JRC holders.

The Union Government would be providing 50 per cent of LPG connection charges in respect of AAY and BPL card holders.

Overall, however, the shift to LPG from kerosene would be financially beneficial for the Delhi Government. At present each card holder is being given 12.5 litres of oil per month at Rs. 14.83 per litre and the Government and the oil companies are incurring a huge burden of nearly Rs.33 per litre or nearly Rs. 412 per ration card.

The Chief Minister also declared that her Government was considering offering an option of Rs.1,000 per month as cash transfer to BPL card holders for procuring food grains.

“This will enable them to purchase grains of their choice and they would feel at ease as they will not to be forced to visit ration shops again and again to inquire about the availability of the grains.’’ Ms. Dikshit said the Union Government’s concurrence is being sought in the matter.

She also announced that Dilli Annshri Yojana would be launched within two months to provide cash transfer of Rs.600 per month to the senior most member of about two lakh poor families, other than 4 lakh BPL and AAY card holders, who are being provided food grains through PDS.

Delhi Food and Supplies Minister Haroon Yusuf said beneficiaries under the kerosene scheme would have to contact the nearest circle office of the Food and Supplies Department to procure their LPG connection and gas.

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