KOCHI, December 16: About 500,000 bogus or inactive LPG connections in the state have been cancelled following stringent norms insisting on linking Aadhaar as part of the Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) system.
Officials of oil marketing companies (OMCs) told TOI that consumers who had multiple connections would also have cancelled or surrendered their additional cylinder to bring the total number down to 75 lakh from the 80-lakh figure recorded last year.
Asenior official of the Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) said OMCs are collating more data on the break-up of inactive and multiple connections. Officials were of the view that more consumers would cancel or surrender multiple connections by February 15, the deadline set for linking Aadhaarbank accounts with LPG consumer number. According to the State Level Bankers’ Committee even though 93% of the 75-lakh-odd LPG customers have Aadhaar, only 78% have linked it with consumer numbers. Interestingly , only 68% have linked their consumer number, Aadhaar and bank accounts to receive LPG subsidy .
Though most of them had initiated the process in the first phase, sources said the progress was very slow when the scheme was reintroduced on November 15. Only 1.4% gave their Aadhaar details to dealers and 1.7% their bank accounts during the last 15 days. OMC officials, however, are hopeful that the pace of registration will pick up in coming days.
“The deterrent could be multiple connections many have as they don’t want to lose them. But eventually they will have to let go once the DBT exercise is complete,” said an IOC source.
But the latest phase of the exercise is not giving many hassles to OMCs. “We’ve not received any complaint about delay in getting subsidies or amount being remitted other accounts,” sources said. Almost all issues have been sorted out, said M Sangeeth kumar, general secretary of All India LPG Distributors’ Federation, Kerala chapter.