CHENNAI: Domestic LPG cylinder consumers are hassled by multiple confusions plaguing the registration process to migrate to the Direct Benefit Transfer of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (DBTL) regime that will come into vogue from the New Year.
Many banks and gas agencies in Chennai and elsewhere appear clueless on the process and are therefore turning away consumers who approach them to submit the mandatory application forms for the DBTL registration.
A modified DBTL Scheme, originally conceived by the UPA-II regime to plug misuse of subsidy, was introduced in select pockets of the country, including Puducherry in November. In a month’s time the Modi government has planned to roll out the scheme across India to enable direct transfer of the subsidy component to the bank accounts of LPG consumers.
However, consumers who are thronging gas agencies and banks in large numbers to ensure that they don’t miss the deadline are complaining that the staff are not well versed with the nitty-gritty of the scheme. “I had approached an Indane Gas Agency to know how to register for the DBTL since I do not have an Aadhaar card. The staff gave me Form 3 and asked me to fill the details and submit the form in my bank and obtain the endorsement from the bank on a perforated sheet. But when I approached a nationalised bank in Mugappair East, the manager was clueless and refused to accept it,” said Govindan, a senior citizen.
Another senior staff at the bank told Govindan that only application forms which are linked to an Aadhaar card will be accepted.
“When I insisted, the official agreed to endorse my application with a caveat — ‘Don’t ask us if you do not get your LPG subsidy,’” he rued.
Later when Govindan checked the website www.mylpg.in he was surprised to find that the nationalised bank and its Mugappair East branch have actually been mentioned in an approved list of banks for accepting Form 3.
Tirumalai, a consumer from KK Nagar, lamented that though he had an Aadhaar card and had filled up the required form, but his LPG distributor refused to accept it.
“The Petroleum Ministry’s manual on DBTL says Form 2 (for those with Aadhaar card) can be manually submitted to the LPG distributor. But the staff there asked me to submit the form in the bank where I have a savings account. I am now wondering what to do,” Tirumalai said.
Consumers are also finding it difficult to get their correct 17-digit LPG Consumer ID number. “Indane gas agency staff told me to get the number from the last LPG cylinder receipt issued to me. But when I checked the receipt I found only a 16-digit number. I went back to the LPG agency and they asked me to add a ‘3’ to the 16-digit,” said Ramasamy of Kolathur.
Some consumers like Ramesh of Anna Nagar received an SMS of their 17-digit LPG number only to find that it actually contained just 16 digits.