The Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas, Government of India launched two schemes on 5 October 2013 to empower the consumers. Under these two new schemes consumers can purchase 5 kg LPG cylinders at market price with minimal documentation through Company Owned Retail Outlets (Petrol Stations) and a consumer can opt for the distributor of his choice within a cluster of LPG distributors (portability)
5 Kg Sale through Company Owned Retail Outlets
The scheme provided that consumers can purchase 5 kg LPG cylinders at market price with minimal documentation through Company Owned Retail Outlets (Petrol Stations).
There is an emerging segment of new consumers like IT professionals, BPO employees who want LPG but in absence of proper proof of address (POA) cannot access the same. Because of their highly irregular work timings, they may not be able to visit the distributor or be at home to receive cylinders during normal working hours. For some consumers, the need is in small parcels or arises at odd times of the day when distributors may be closed.
Previously OMCs are marketing LPG filled cylinders to various customers through LPG distributor network all over India from their own LPG bottling Plants supplied to the Distributors godown. All such customers are being enrolled by collecting Proof of Identity (POI), Proof of Address (POA) and a deposit for the cylinder and regulator and in turn issuing a Subscription Voucher thereby loaning the equipment to the customer in lieu of the deposit received. Such customers are registered into Oil Marketing Companies (OMC) database as customers and subsequent refills are issued to only such customers who place their booking against the above customer number.
Inter-Company LPG Portability scheme
Under the portability scheme, a consumer can opt for the distributor of his choice within a cluster of LPG distributors in the vicinity. The option is to be registered electronically on the website of the OMC to which the consumer is presently attached.
This scheme first implemented in the cities of Kolkata, Chennai, Mumbai and Bangalore on a pilot basis through select Retail Outlets. Upon completion of the pilot, the facility would be extended to other towns and cities also.
The Schemes will not be implemented in cities/districts of the States going to Polls announced yesterday, due implementation of Model Code of Conduct.
5 Kg Sale through Company Owned Retail Outlets scheme is useful to migratory population 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 time of their choice as Petrol Stations are open for longer hours.
Inter-Company LPG Portability scheme will bring great relief to consumers who are unhappy with their LPG distributor or want to move to a distributor closer to his home.