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Ujjwala beneficiaries back to firewood as LPG prices soar

Not only are PMUY beneficiaries unable to get the LPG cylinders refilled, but there is a strong possibility of the empty cylinders even being sold by them to local scrap dealers.

Published: 24th October 2021 10:42 AM  |   Last Updated: 24th October 2021 10:42 AM   |  A+A-

LPG Cylinder

For representational purpose. (Photo | EPS)

BHOPAL:  More than five years after Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY) to distribute LPG connections to women of below poverty line (BPL), soaring prices have pushed back the ambitious scheme’s beneficiaries into smoke-cow dung fuelled era kitchen again in Bhind district of BJP-ruled Madhya Pradesh.

Unable to get refilled LPG cylinders under the scheme owing to high prices, while many PMUY beneficiary families have switched back to burning wood and cow dung cakes as cooking fuel, some others have possibly even sold the old PMUY scheme cylinders to scrap dealers in villages of Lahar area of Bhind district.

“I’m cooking food for my family over burning wood. We’re daily wage labourers and have four children. We cannot afford costly LPG cylinders anymore,” a female resident of Daboh area in Lahar assembly constituency of Bhind said. A gas agency employee in Bhind district confirmed the development. “The beneficiaries of the scheme book the refilled cylinders online, but when we go to their doorstep for delivering the cylinders, they don’t take them, as they are unable to pay the price.”

Not only are PMUY beneficiaries unable to get the LPG cylinders refilled, but there is a strong possibility of the empty cylinders even being sold by them to local scrap dealers. Of the 2.76 lakh families having LPG gas domestic connections in Bhind district, 1.33 lakh are PMUY beneficiaries. “Now, not only the LPG gas connection and gas stove are being provided free, but the first refill of the cylinder too is free. But we cannot help them with future refills,” Bhind district supply officer Avdhesh Pandey said.

When told about visuals of empty cylinders of Ujjwala scheme lying amid husk and straw possibly in premises of local scrap dealers, he expressed ignorance about them, but promised to get the entire matter probed.



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