Centre plans to revamp kerosene distribution

New Delhi, Jan 28 | Updated: Jan 29 2005, 06:05am hrs
The government has prepared a comprehensive plan to push in radical reforms in the public distribution system (PDS) especially of kerosene oil.

Under the new regime, public sector oil marketing companies will be allowed to sell poor mans fuel through oil depots at panchayat level so that black marketing in the sector could be plugged and it is made easily available commodity in the open market.

The Centre plans to initiate marketing of oil through multiple retail outlets in every block, sources in the petroleum ministry told FE.

Besides this, separate arrangement will be made for remote villages where distribution will be done through petrol pumps.

Similarly, kerosene quota under the existing PDS will be drastically cut and a mechanism will be introduced wherein operators will not be able to indulge in black-marketing.

It will be made mandatory for operators to display daily stock position and he will be required to inform this to gram panchayat on day-to-day basis.

However, the kerosene oil will be costlier as compared to existing PDS price but it will be made easily available and in the required quantities to the users, a senior officer of the ministry said.

He said, kerosene through PDS has not met the required rate of success to reach every needy customer and the system has loopholes whereby it is easily available in the black-market at a price to certain categories and it does not reach the needy.

The new arrangement will benefit those who need the most. The government hopes that easy-availability in the required quantities will also help stop black-marketing.