‘Give-It-Up’ campaign receives lukewarm response in Odisha
The much-hyped ‘Give-It-Up’ campaign aimed at motivating well-off LPG consumers to voluntarily surrender their LPG subsidies has received lukewarm response from Odisha – the home State of Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister Dharmendra Pradhan.
It has been over one year since Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the ‘Give-It-Up’ campaign on March 27, 2015, only 1.57 lakh LPG consumers have submitted their subsidised connection. Nationally, over 10.37 crore consumers have voluntarily given up their cooking gas subsidies.
“In Odisha, 39 lakh consumers have cooking gas connections. LPG penetration in Odisha hovers around 39 per cent as against national average of 62 per cent. Despite low penetration in Odisha, we were expecting about 5 lakh consumers would have given up their subsidy by now. But only, 1,57,303 consumers gave it up,” said G. Swaminathan, Chief LPG Manager of IndianOil, Odisha, here on Saturday.
When Odisha accounts for only 2.4 per cent of total LPG consumers in the country, only 1.5 per cent of total consumers, who have surrendered subsidies in India, are from the State.
Mr. Swaminathan said: “It is a matter of concern that only consumers from the middle class have come forward to surrender subsidies while rich and ultra-rich kept them off from the campaign.”
When asked about reasons behind such low number of consumers giving up subsidies, Pritish Bharat, General Manager of IOCL-Odisha and State-level coordinator of Oil Industry, said: “The campaign is all about responding to call of conscience. We cannot force anybody to give up their subsidies. But we hope the situation would improve.”
Of the 1.56 lakh consumers, who have surrendered cooking gas subsidies in Odisha, highest 24,692 are from Khudra district in which Bhubaneswar lies. Khurda is followed by Ganjam (16,307) and Angul (14,951).
Cuttack is the only other district where over 10,000 LPG consumers responded to the campaign.
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