New Delhi: The government will roll out direct transfer of cash subsidy on cooking gas (LPG) in 20 districts from June 1. The Centre looks to cut its subsidy outgo by up to Rs 10,000 crore annually by eliminating diversions.

Oil Minister M Veerappa Moily on Wednesday said that 76 lakh consumers in 20 districts like Mysore, North Goa, Pondicherry, Mandi and Hyderabad, will get Rs 435 in their back accounts every time they book an LPG refill.

These consumers then will have to buy cooking gas at market price which is double the Rs 410.50 rate for a 14.2-kg bottle in Delhi. Announcing the launch, Moily said the government intends to extend the scheme to rest of the country but refused to give timelines for the same.

"We are ready to launch the direct benefit transfer (DBT) scheme for LPG all over the country but we want to see the results of the roll-out in these 20 districts," he said.

Moily said the 20 districts selected have high Aadhaar or unique identification number penetration.

The 20 districts where the DBT for LPG is being launched include Anantpur, Chittoor, East Godavari, Hyderabad, Ranga Reddy, Diu, North Goa, Bilaspur, Hamirpur, Mandi, Una, Mysore, Tumkur, Pathanamthitta, Wayand, Wardha, Pondicherry, SBS Nagar/Nawanshahar, Khandwa and Harda.

These districts have 76 lakh LPG consumers and 520 LPG dealerships. Eighty-nine percent of the LPG consumers have Aadhaar number, 52 percent have been seeded in the national LPG database and 15 percent already have their bank accounts seeded with UID number. "The scheme aims to curb leakages and prevent black-marketing and provide subsidy," Moily said.

New LPG connections in these districts too will be available only to persons with Aadhaar number.

Consumers who do not provide Aadhaar will continue to get LPG cylinders at market price.


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