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HindustanTimes Sat,20 Sep 2014

LPG subsidy in your bank soon

Chetan Chauhan, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, March 28, 2013
First Published: 22:49 IST(28/3/2013) | Last Updated: 23:53 IST(28/3/2013)

The direct benefit transfer – hailed by the government as a ‘game changer’ project – could soon touch your lives too.

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Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will take a call on bringing LPG subsidies under the direct benefit transfer (DBT) framework next week, a move that is slated to be rolled out in 43 districts across the country including Delhi’s north-east and north-west districts.

The LPG consumers will have to pay market price of the cooking gas cylinders off-front and the government would later transfer subsidy directly into unique identification (UID) or Aadhaar linked bank accounts.

A sizeable number of consumers in these 43 districts have already provided their Aadhaar and bank account numbers to LPG dealers ensuring smooth roll-out, government officials said. The government intends to extend the regime to around 10 crore consumers in other districts as the decision is expected to push LPG consumers to enroll for Aadhaar.

Putting LPG on the DBT platform would leapfrog the UPA’s effort to extend the technology driven mechanism to other subsidies aimed at plugging leakages to cut the government’s annual subsidy bill by around Rs. 70,000 crore.

An Aadhaar based cash transfer pilot in Mysore district of Karnataka has shown positive results, an official said.

Till now, only 26 non-subsidy schemes such as scholarships and pensions are on the DBT mode since January 1, when it was rolled out. Although the results are not as desired by the government, the officials say the UID payment bridge --- used to transfer the money --- has worked well.

The April 3 meeting is the first review of the DBT by the committee headed by PM Singh since its rollout 20 districts and would provide another fillip to the scheme.


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