PDS kerosene set to become dearer

Likely to fuel demand for new LPG connections

Kerosene dispensed under the public distribution system (PDS) is on course to becoming costlier by ₹4 a litre over the next eight months.

This follows a Government of India decision to enhance its retail selling price by 25 paise per litre per fortnight towards reducing the under-recovery for the oil marketing companies. Consequently, Telangana government has issued an order under which the end consumer price of the domestic fuel, a mainstay for the economically weak households, would move up from existing ₹25 a litre to ₹29 by December.

When compared to the February price of ₹24, the increase proposed by this calender year end translates into ₹5 a litre.

As per the Civil Supplies Department G.O., issued on April 2, a litre of kerosene sold under PDS would cost ₹26 in May and June; ₹27 (July-August); ₹28 (September-October); and ₹29 (November-December).

The previous instance of the Centre opting to enhance the price of PDS kerosene, in such small doses of 25 paise per litre a fortnight, to offset the under-recovery, was in August last year. It, however, was discontinued by September. Thereafter, until January this year, the basic selling price of PDS kerosene was not revised by the Centre.

The brighter side of the increase, explain multiple sources in national oil companies and the State government, will be kerosene using households switching over to the cleaner, efficient liquefied petroleum gas (LPG). Such a change, they point out, would pave the way for the cities and towns in Telangana to become kerosene-free and cut down on carbon emissions.

An environment-friendly transformation is bound to deliver more benefits over time. As regards, the under recoveries of oil companies on PDS kerosene, supplied across the country, it dropped to ₹786 crore in the July-September quarter in 2017-18 from ₹1,280 crore in the April-June quarter.

Telangana government, an official of an oil company said, was keen on turning into a kerosene-free State and towards this reducing quotas. The intent is well supported by the e-PoS system introduced at the fair price shops to curb leakage of the subsidised commodities and ensure that they reach the targeted beneficiaries.

Ujjawala scheme soon

Officials of the three public sector oil marketing companies are confident of a good potential for new LPG connections notwithstanding a high-level penetration in Telangana, thanks to the Deepam scheme. The number of registered domestic LPG consumers in the State was 1.10 crore in 2016-17.

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Printable version | Apr 4, 2020 5:40:56 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/pds-kerosene-set-to-become-dearer/article23437578.ece

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