Monday, September 27, 2021
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‘Proposal to stop kerosene subsidy to households with power’

The government has received a proposal to keep households that are getting regular supply of electricity out of subsidised kerosene sales, Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said Monday.

After trimming cooking gas (LPG) subsidy through direct cash transfer to intended beneficiaries, the Oil Ministry is looking at ways to cut kerosene subsidy, which last fiscal was Rs 30,575 crore.

“The states should reduce their dependence on kerosene. One of the proposals that we received was that the households that have received electricity as per 2011 census, should not be given kerosene,” Pradhan said addressing a seminar on Energy Security here.

He however did not say if the government was in agreement with the proposal.

Kerosene is used in rural and urban poor for both lighting and cooking purposes.

Paying cash subsidy to actual users of cooking gas will help trim the LPG payout by about 15 percent. Last fiscal, LPG subsidy was to the tune of Rs 46,458 crore.

Stressing on the need for reducing kerosene subsidy, Pradhan said that although kerosene is a subsidised product there should be a demarcation line for subsidy on kerosene.

He said the proposal to cut supply of subsidised kerosene to households getting regular electricity should be thoroughly examined before taking it forward.

“We also need to see the position of electricity supply in those areas, whether it has actually reached the end user or not,” he said.

Meanwhile, defending the government’s move of not reducing fuel prices in the domestic market after the global crude prices declined, he said, the government will reduce the prices when an opportunity comes.

“Yes, it is true it has not been passed on to the end consumers but substantially it has been passed on, in order to neutralise inflation we have brought down the price of petrol, we will reduce it further when another opportunity comes.”

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