Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs Minister Ramesh Dhawala has urged the Central Government to restore the Public Distribution System (PDS) quota of kerosene oil to Himachal Pradesh.
In a letter written to Union Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas Jaipal Reddy, today, Dhawala said that due to drastic cut in the allotment of kerosene quota, great hardship had been caused to the people of the State. He said that due to the cut imposed in the State’s share of PDS kerosene quota, the per capita allocation of kerosene to the State which was 8.52 litre per year in the year 2009-10 had come down to 4.74 litre in the year 2011-12 which had been further reduced to 3.59 litres in the first quarter of 2012-13. The quota had been reduced from 5411 KL to 2056 KL per month, he added.
The Minister urged the Union Minister that keeping in view the inclement weather conditions of the State which remained almost cold throughout the year requires more fuel for cooking. He said that as the State Government had banned tree-felling and use of steam coal, therefore, the people of the hill State were most dependent upon kerosene oil and LPG for cooking purposes.
Minister said that there were 9,74,730 domestic LPG connections in the State and the total number of ration card holders without domestic LPG connections were 6,57,074 which indicates that the requirement of kerosene oil as per national per capita allocation policy comes to 5631 KL whereas at present the State of Himachal Pradesh was getting lowest per capita allocation of kerosene oil in the country.
He requested the Minister to consider the request of State Government and allocate 5631 KL per month as per national average policy to tide over the acute shortage of kerosene oil. He also requested to allot additional allocation of 1500 KL for the tribal and snow bound areas for winter stocking.