Saturday 13 October 2012

Uttarakhand CM urges Centre to Hike kerosene quota for Uttarakhand | This is short-term solution

Written by Anil Singh

In an effort to ameliorate the public grievance on the issue of LPG crisis which prevailed due to verification drive run by the oil companies, the Uttarakhand CM Vijay Bahuguna day before yesterday met Union Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister Jaipal Reddy in New Delhi and urged him to increase kerosene quota for Uttarakhand.

The CM categorically indicated to the Union Minister that the Centre had earlier reduced kerosene quota citing the reason that Uttarakhand had more LPG connection. The CM also expressed his objection to the verification process launched by the oil companies for LPG connection, a drive which has resulted in about 1.50 lakh connections been blocked.

All these have acutely distressed the people of Uttarakhand.

As per the Census 2011, the LPG gas connections are available to just 48 percent of the Uttarakhand families (Averages do lie, as many people have multiple gas connections; hence much lesser families in Uttarakhand will have LPG connections. Hence LPG connections reach in Uttarakhand will be lesser than 48 percent).

Thus it can be safely assumed that more than 52 out of every 100 families in Uttarakhand are dependent on traditional fuel sources like wood and kerosene oil.

With this logic, the CM has pointed out that limiting the connection and blocking 1.5 Lakh live connections would have a bearing on forest and wood. A logic which may only be partially true.

Partially true, as Kerosene is not the solution the problem. As majority of people use Kerosene with wood; with the former acting only as an ignitor.

In short, although increasing the Uttarakhand Kerosene quota, won't do any harm to the state; it's not the solution to decrease pressure from Uttarakhand forests.

What is needed here is a right LPG policy and subsidy in LPG to those dependent on traditional fuel sources like wood and kerosene oil (it can be selective too). Connecting LPG policy to a holistic dairy policy could be a good idea (it's seen that Uttarakhand People use wood to prepare feed for their domestic animals).


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