With an aim to provide universal coverage of cooking gas, Union Cabinet on Thursday approved the Pradhan Mantri Ujwala Yojana to supply free LPG connections to 5 Crore poor families.
Cabinet approved RS 8000 crores for 3 years to supply on a war footing LPG connections to women members of BPL families.
Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said “WHO report says nearly 5 Lakh women lose their life due to domestic pollution. We must stop it”.
Government is planning to open 12000 distribution points’ supply 5 crore units of LPG.
“5 Crore new connections mean 5 crore cylinders, Stove regulators and pipes. It will create lot of manufacturing units to cater and create employment,” Said Dhramendra Pradhan.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, in his Budget for 2016-17, had set aside Rs 2,000 crore this year to meet the initial cost of providing these LPG connections to 1 crore 50 Lakh households below the poverty line.
“Women of India have faced the curse of smoke during the process of cooking. According to experts, having an open fire in the kitchen is like burning 400 cigarettes an hour. The time has come to remedy this situation,” he said said in his Budget speech.
Saying the scheme is aimed at empowering women and protecting their health, Pradhan said ‘ Scheme will be continued for at least two more years to cover a total of 5 crore BPL households.’
( With PTI inputs)