The Central Government has been appealing to people since last year to give up their subsidy on LPG to favour the less privileged and poor. Their request received an overwhelming response as around 1.13 crore household gave up their subsidy, which resulted in saving of Rs 8,000 crore. With such a good response Narendra Modi launched the Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana in Uttar Pradesh’s Ballia on May 1. This scheme aims to provide 5 crore free cooking (LPG) connections to below-poverty-line families over the next three years. Nearly Rs 5,000 crore of subsidy saved through the is being used to provide LPG connection to the poor.
What are its benefits?
The government claims that providing LPG connections to BPL households will ensure universal coverage of cooking gas in the country.
The scheme provides a financial support of Rs 1,600 for each LPG connection to the BPL households. The identification of eligible BPL families will be made in consultation with the state governments and the Union Territories.
India currently has 16.64 crore active LPG consumers with a consumption of 21 million metric tonnes of liquefied petroleum gas. During 2016-17, around 1.5 crore connections will be provided.
Why has this project been launched?
In a report of 2012, the World Health Organisation had highlighted the major health issues and problems caused by the use of traditional chulhas. The report added “Globally, 4.3 million deaths were attributable to household air pollution (HAP) in 2012, almost all in low and middle income (LMI) countries. The south-east Asian and Western Pacific regions bear most of the burden with 1.69 and 1.62 million deaths, respectively. Almost 600000 deaths occur in Africa, 200000 in the Eastern Mediterranean region, 99000 in Europe and 81000 in the Americas. The remaining 19000 deaths occur in high income countries.” Such reports make this implementation of LPG gas almost mandatory. Hence this project has been launched.
The Logical Indian applauds the initiative by the Central government for launching this scheme.