With the initial deadline set by the Central government for the Aadhaar-based Direct Benefit Transfer of LPG (DBTL) set to end this month, the majority of domestic LPG subscribers in the district are yet to seed their Aadhaar number with the LPG consumer number and their respective bank accounts.

Sources at the District Civil Supplies (DCS) office told The Hindu the DBTL scheme was yet to begin in right earnest in the district. The DCS office does not have any data on the total number of domestic LPG consumers or on the number of LPG consumers who have seeded their Aadhaar number with the LPG consumer ID.

“We have written to the oil companies to intimate us about the progress of DBTL among their respective customers,” an official at the DCS office said.

DBTL requires LPG consumers to seed their Aadhaar numbers with their respective LPG consumer ID and bank account that will facilitate direct transfer of subsidy for each cylinder to their bank accounts up to a capped limit of nine cylinders a year. For this, consumers will have to apply in a prescribed form, or through the internet, along with a copy of their Aadhaar card or a letter from the gas agency and the bank concerned.

Once the bank account is seeded with the Aadhaar number, the subsidy component of Rs. 435 per cylinder will be routed through Aadhaar Payment Bridge, a product of the National Payments Corporation of India, to the beneficiary’s account.

E.M. Mujeeb, a government employee based in Kakkanad, said his hectic work schedule had prevented him from seeding his Aadhaar number with LPG consumer ID and bank account. “Besides, there are reports that the government is likely to extend the deadline,” he said.

The gas agency operators, meanwhile, complained of constant inquiries on DBTL from the consumers. “Many consumers have approached us with complaints that though they have enrolled for Aadhaar number they were yet to get it. In such cases we have directed them to get a print out of e-Aadhaar from the internet,” said Jose, a Bharat Gas agent.

A senior official of an oil company said there was no cause for panic since there would be a grace period of at least three months for acquiring the status of Cash Transfer Compliant (CTC) consumer.

CTC consumers will get a one-time advance to buy their very first subsidised cylinder under the DBTL scheme while booking a re-fill and also the usual subsidy component on taking its delivery. This is to ensure that the poorest of the consumers will always have a subsidy component in their account to buy the cylinders at market price.

Meanwhile, Akshaya entrepreneurs in the district, who have been entrusted with enrolment for Aadhaar, claimed that Aadhaar enrolment in the district has touched about 115 per cent.

“Ernakulam is home to a lot of people from other districts and many of them have enrolled at the Akshaya centres here,” said M.P. Chackochan, president, Save Akshaya Entrepreneurs Forum for Existence (SAFE). He said less than 10 per cent of the original residents of the district remain to be enrolled.

Mr. Chackochan said the delay in securing the Aadhaar card should not be a problem as e-Aadhaar could be obtained from the nearest Akshaya centre or from the website www.eaadhaar.uidai.gov.in on feeding in the details on the UID enrolment slip.

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