It is nearly three months since domestic LPG consumers in Mysore district have been brought under the Aadhaar-linked Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) scheme wherein subsidy is credited to their bank accounts.
But, of the nearly 5.48 lakh domestic LPG consumers in the district, only about 3,48,000 are “cash transfer compliant”. This means only 3.48 lakh LPG consumers — whose Aadhaar number, LPG consumer number and bank account number have been seeded or mapped — are eligible to receive subsidy. The rest will have to pay the prevailing market price (Rs. 941) for an LPG refill from October 1, 2013.
The DBT scheme was launched in Mysore on July 1 as part of a pilot project as Aadhaar enrolment in the district was reckoned to be high. The three-month grace period for consumers to comply with the formalities of linking their Aadhaar number with LPG consumer number and bank account number ends on September 30.
But despite an awareness drive conducted by the Mysore District Bankers Forum and a district-wide mass campaign, there are many consumers who are yet to submit the documents.
District Lead Bank Manager K.N. Shivalingaiah told The Hindu that as far as banks were concerned, the documents were being seeded as and when they were received from customers.
“All banks have established a controlling office at their respective regional or zonal offices with dedicated staff for seeding the documents and the process takes place as and when the documents are received and latest within 48 hours,” he said.
Mr. Shivalingaiah said there was no communication from higher authorities on whether the grace period would be extended or not.
Officials pointed out that there was no district in the country where seeding rate was cent per cent and the highest — 75 per cent — was in Wayanad in Kerala.
Mehul Patel, an LPG retailer, said 84 per cent of the LPG consumers in the district had submitted Aadhaar numbers to their respective distributors. But many had failed to comply with the documentation norms with banks.
There have been complaints from many consumers that they have not received subsidy this month though they had got it in the past.
One such consumer, Mahesh of Visveshwarnagar said though he received subsidy in July and August, he was yet to get it for the refill he book this month.
Mr. Patel said the delay could be because of the consumers’ failure to confirm to the LPG distributor that the Aadhaar number and the consumer number matched by them was correct. This step was initiated by the government following complaints that subsidy was being transferred to wrong bank accounts. “Once the consumers confirm and authenticate their Aadhaar number with the LPG distributor then the subsidy will be credited.”
According to sources, the DBT scheme implementation has shown that claims about loss to exchequer due to wide-spread diversion of LPG are exaggerated.
Mr. Patel said, “There is no significant drop in the LPG consumer base after the introduction of the DBT scheme. It has remained more or less constant. But this is as far as Mysore is concerned and the experience from the rest of India remains to be seen.”