The union budget 2019-20 is likely to renew the focus on Prime Minister Modi-led National Democratic Alliance government’s flagship Ujjwala scheme to ensure LPG coverage for all of the country's households before the year-end, reports LiveMint.
According to the report, the Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, as part of her budget speech, may propose to complete the targeted 80 million connections under the Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY) in the first 100 days of the government. The Ujjwala connections, so far, have reached the 71.9 million mark.
Furthermore, another 10-20 million new LPG connections would be given in the subsequent months to cover all poor households, as part of a cabinet decision taken late last year.
If the target is achieved, then the country will have increased the access to LPG connections to households from the current 93-94 per cent to 100 per cent. For this, Sitharaman is likely to allocate an additional Rs 2,000-3,000 crore for ensuring complete covered in the ongoing financial year.
The government is reportedly also deliberating on the idea of promoting the usage of smaller 5 kg LPG cylinders to increase the refill rate, which stands at 3 per annum as against the national average of seven refills in a year. The idea finds its merit in the high costs involved in getting a 14.2 kg cylinder refilled, which is a major reason why lower number of LPG cylinders are being used by the poor families.