As part of a series of customer empowering initiatives, the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas is set to commence the sale of five-kg gas cylinders at market-linked prices through selected petrol pumps in major cities on Saturday.
The ministry is also launching portability of LPG connection across oil marketing companies (OMCs) on the same day. Petroleum Minister Veerappa Moily would be formally launching the five-kg cylinder sale through petrol stations and the LPG portability schemes on Saturday in Bangalore, the ministry said. The first initiative allows the sale of these LPG cylinders at the market price with minimal paperwork through company- owned retail outlets (petrol stations).
"This would be a boon to migrant groups such as students, IT professionals, BPO employees and persons with odd duty timings as it would provide them the flexibility to pick up cylinders and obtain subsequent refills at the time of their choice as petrol stations are open for longer hours," the ministry said.
This scheme is being launched in the cities of Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai, Mumbai and Bangalore on a pilot basis through select retail outlets.
The second initiative is the Inter Company LPG Portability Scheme. Presently, an LPG consumer is attached to a distributor and cannot change his distributor even if he is unhappy with the service of the distributor or the oil marketing company.
Under this portability scheme, a consumer can now opt for the distributor of his choice within a cluster of LPG distributors in the vicinity and across the oil companies. The consumers would be able to see the service ratings of all the distributors in their cluster and choose the one they want based on service levels. To make the life of the consumer easier, the option is registered electronically on the website of the OMC to which the consumer is presently attached.
Electronic tracking of the portability request and closure is in place to ensure a consumer does not have any difficulty to move to a distributor of his choice. This would usher in improvement in consumer service by the distributors as it would bring in competition in the cluster of distributors and bring choice to consumers who want to change their LPG distributor within or across the oil company or want to move to a distributor closer to his home.
The scheme would eventually cover 30 cities across the country.