The Government has decided to expand the scheme of selling non-subsidised 5 kg LPG cylinders from petrol pumps. Now, sale of these cylinders in select cities by public sector oil marketing companies will not be restricted to pumps owned and operated by them alone.

“OMCs have been allowed to include petrol stations other than company-owned and company operated subject to the statutory clearances of Oil Industry Safety Directorate/Petroleum Explosive & Safety,” a Petroleum and Natural Gas Ministry statement said.

It added that Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas M. Veerappa Moily had approved a proposal to extend the scope of this scheme, subject to the election model code of conduct.

This decision is expected to benefit the common man as sale of 5 kg LPG cylinders at market price with minimal documentation would facilitate easier availability of cooking gas at more selling points.

These cylinders will be sold (equipment + product) at non-domestic rates with/without regulator for the first time by charging Rs 1,000 plus applicable taxes for the cylinder and Rs 250 plus applicable taxes for the regulator.

The cost of product and refills – cost of LPG will be according to non-domestic rates applicable in the market, the statement said. A 5 kg cylinder is sold at about Rs 340-350.

The scheme was launched by Moily on October 5 in Bangalore for sale from select company-owned and company-operated petrol pumps in Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai and Bangalore.

There is an emerging segment of new consumers such as IT professionals and BPO employees who want cooking gas but do not have access to it in the absence of proper proof of address. Further, because of their highly irregular work timings, they may not be able to visit the distributor or be at home to receive cylinders during working hours, the statement said.

“This initiative allows sale of 5 kg LPG cylinders at market price with merely any proof of identity through petrol stations to attend to demand of such consumers,” it said.

richa.mishra@thehindu.co.in

(This article was published on November 4, 2013)
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