The Petroleum Rules, 1976, says no licence is needed for transport or storage of petroleum class B (non-bulk) in quantity not exceeding 2,500 litres and in receptacle not exceeding 1,000 litres. Petroleum class B includes diesel, but not petrol. This is the space wherein Bengaluru-based Ashish Gupta has got registered enterprise ANB Fuels. Under the brand name MyPetrolPump, the company has already started home delivery of diesel in some areas of Bengaluru. Through phone call or online booking, customers can place order for diesel. A pick up truck mounted with a 950-litre tank—fabricated as per the specifications issued by the Petroleum and Explosives Safety Organisation (PESO)—buys diesel from the nearest retail fuel outlet and delivers at the provided address. The customer needs to pay the cost of diesel as charged by the retail outlet and is handed over the receipt obtained at the outlet.
In addition, the customer is also handed over an invoice for delivery charges, the amount the company earns. The dispenser metre that is used has been imported from the US and it meets the criteria of the weights and measurement department, said Gupta. Petroleum minister Dharmendra Pradhan had on April 21 tweeted that the ministry of petroleum and natural gas is exploring home delivery of petroleum products. However, during a consultations held later with representatives from the petroleum ministry, oil marketing companies, department of consumer affairs and the department of industry policy and promotion, raised concerns regarding safety especially while dispensing fuel were voiced, as reported by FE.
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According to Gupta, the start-up meets all the stated rules. He added the current rules neither support nor prohibit such a concept. “We have spent a lot to ensure safety and legal norms are not violated,” he added. Gupta claims that he had written to PESO explaining his concept and in return the Chennai branch of the organisation–entrusted with the responsibility to ensure safety of public from storage and distribution of fuels — sent him a letter stating the concept does require a safety licence from PESO to operate the business. FE has not seen the letter. ANB Fuels sold diesel worth R25,000 to Bengaluru’s Sri Sai Vidya Mandira to be used by the school’s buses, said a school staff over phone.
According to a petroleum ministry source, close to development, requesting anonymity, said Gupta was present at a meeting of stakeholders to look at the ways for home delivery of petrol and diesel, and he had presented his concept.