LPG, fuel dealers appeal for priority vaccination

Around 12,000 people working to ensure uninterrupted cooking gas supplies and a matching number of workers in the petroleum fuel outlets across the State should be considered as "front-line warriors" and given priority access to vaccination against COVID-19, said dealers here, who are worried that if the pandemic gripped the sector, the supply chain could be broken.

Joy Kalapura, State president of the Bharat Gas Distributors’ Association, said that gas dealers across the country had appealed to the Union Health Ministry for priority vaccination of the workers in the sector. Similar efforts were being made in the State too.

He said that there were 684 gas distribution agencies in the State served by 6,840 LPG cylinder delivery boys, who visited 2.70 lakh homes across the State on a daily basis. Each delivery worker visited around 50 homes per day. The lives of these workers and their families were put at risk because they came in close contact with people at their delivery points on a daily basis. Sometimes, the situation was such that the delivery boys were told of the presence of an infected person in a house only after he delivered the cylinder.

M. Radhakrishnan, patron of the All Kerala Federation of Petroleum Dealers, said that around 12,000 workers were engaged in petrol pumps across the State. These include those associated with the filling stations, drivers and cleaners and those who service the customers. Those directly delivering fuel to the customers came in contact with around 3,000 customers daily. This implied that their plight should be considered as an area that needed priority attention. There were 2,000 pumps belonging to the three public sector oil companies in the State. Besides, there were outlets operated by private oil distribution companies.

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Printable version | Jun 22, 2021 1:56:34 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/lpg-fuel-dealers-appeal-for-priority-vaccination/article34492883.ece

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