Seeking to expand the services and make the booking of an LPG cylinder a “painless” exercise, the Petroleum and Natural Gas Ministry on Monday launched the LPG booking service through SMS or a text messages, here.
Launching the services, Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister Murli Deora said the service will initially be available in Delhi and extended to other metropolitan cities, State capitals and other townships.
The Indian Oil Corporation and Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited consumers will have to register their mobile phone number by text messaging their local LPG distributor number and consumer number to 54625 and 52725 respectively.
Thereafter, they are required to type LPG and send it to the same number to book LPG refills. For Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Limited, bookings will be done through the IVRS system by dialling 9990923456, wherein voice guidance will prompt customers to register and book refills.
Customers will get a flash message on confirmation of registration, refill booking and refill delivery.
Mr. Deora made the first booking through his mobile phone.
He said the services were part of Market Vision 2015 prepared by the Ministry to reach out to the people and consumers in a big way.
The three State-run fuel retailers also launched a common toll-free number for customer complaints.
Oil firms are tying up with mobile and fixed-line telephone service providers to register the new service, and will slowly connectLPG dealers to the network.
“The service will be available in the entire National Capital Region (NCR) by September-end, and in other metros, by the year-end.
“Gradually, all cities with a population of more than 5 lakh will be covered by the service,” Petroleum Secretary R.S. Pandey, the brain behind the initiative, said.
Mr. Deora said the schemes will prove to be a milestone in customer satisfaction and provide better interface between customers and dealers.
“We are going to release 5.5 crore new LPG connections by 2015, taking the total number of connections from the present 11.5 crore to 16 crore. This will increase coverage from 50 per cent of population at present to 75 per cent.”