Confusion persists about the system and the process of subsidy transfer

Domestic LPG users in Tiruchirapalli, Pudukottai and Nagapattinam districts should get their Aadhaar numbers linked with their bank accounts and distributors before January 31 to get subsidy under the Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) scheme

The DBT scheme was launched in the three districts from November 1. LPG users are given three months time to carry out the ‘seeding process’ from the date of the launch of the scheme.

Under the scheme, LPG users will have to buy the refills at market price and the difference between subsidised price and market price will be transferred to their bank accounts.

Consumers are required to submit the bank account-Aadhaar linkage application form at their bank branches and also register the Aadhaar numbers with their LPG distributors to complete the seeding process and become ‘cash transfer compliant.’

However, many LPG consumers in Tiruchi are yet to get their Aadhaar numbers linked with bank accounts and with the distributors.

For instance, just about 25 per cent of the 5.35-lakh LPG consumers in Tiruchi district have so far carried out the seeding process fully although nearly 70 per cent of the district population is said to have enrolled for Aadhaar cards, according to sources in the [in;oc sector oil marketing companies.

Although officials of the companies contend that the seeding process was progressing and could take some time, they concede that there was some confusion among consumers about the process and the system of transfer of subsidy.

After the Supreme Court’s order in the third week of September, directing the Centre not to tie provision of subsidies or benefits with “Aadhaar” numbers, many people did not show much interest in getting the Aadhaar cards.

However, there has been a rush at the Aadhaar enrolment centres after the launch of the DBT for LPG consumers in the districts.

As to the confusion over the transfer of subsidy, a senior officer of Indian Oil Corporation said an advance subsidy of Rs.435 (the average subsidy of the previous nine cylinders) will be transferred within two or three days after the consumer books the first refill on becoming cash transfer complaint by seeding the Aadhaar numbers with their bank accounts and distributors. This is only an advance subsidy which has to be surrendered when the consumer surrenders or transfers the gas connection.

The actual subsidy for the cylinders will be transferred to the consumers’ bank accounts within 10 days after the delivery of every refill (subject to a maximum of nine in a year).

Check portal

Consumers will not be compliant unless they carry out the linkage at both the bank and distributor. Consumers can check whether they are cash transfer compliant by visiting the transparency portals at the websites of the respective oil companies (Indane, Bharat or HP Gas).