Gurgaon: Sale of illegally filled LPG cylinders a hazard, says food supplies dept
Monday’s fire is suspected to have been caused by a leakage in one such cylinder and it was further aggravated when 15 more cylinders, kept in separate huts, burst in the fire. Slum dwellers say they opt for these cylinders as they are easily available in nearby areas though they have to pay a bit more for it.Updated: Mar 27, 2018 22:44 IST
The fire at Tigra village in Sector 57, in which a 13-year-old girl was killed on Monday, has exposed the threat posed by the illegal filling and open sale of small LPG cylinders in several places in the city.
Monday’s fire is suspected to have been caused by a leakage in one such cylinder and it was further aggravated when 15 more cylinders, kept in separate huts, burst in the fire.
According to sources, several people are running a racket of transferring gas from the 14kg domestic LPG cylinders to smaller ones, weighing about 1kg or 2kg. These small cylinders are sold for Rs 80-100 per kg. Most people living in huts and slums buy the small cylinders as they are not able to procure authorised LPG connections in the absence of required documents.
Slum dwellers say they opt for these cylinders as they are easily available in nearby areas though they have to pay a bit more for it.
“The dealer asks for Rs 5,500 for one LPG cylinder as he is selling it on the black. The small cylinder, on the other hand, is easy to carry and gets refilled in the same locality. If it is illegal, then why don’t the authorities stop it? These cylinders are openly available in the market,” Sarjeet Singh, whose hut was gutted on Monday, said.
District food and supplies controller (DFSC) Ram Avatar Yadav said his department regularly checks such illegal activities and since the incident has come to his notice, he would form teams and conduct surprise checks to ensure that no such activity is carried out in the city.
“It has been observed that the people living in shanties are not aware that small gas cylinders are being sold illegally. We will start acting against those selling these small cylinders and also against those who are getting such cylinders refilled,” Yadav said.
Yadav said suppliers usually transfer gas into these small cylinders using a narrow pipe and the entire process is a risky one as there are chances of a leakage. Cylinders often explode due to the leakages, he said.
Any person found supplying or selling such gas cylinders will be booked under the relevant sections of the Prevention of Black Marketing and Maintenance of Supplies of Essential Commodities Act, 1980, he said.