A conference regarding Direct Benefit Transfer of Kerosene (DBTK) subsidy was held under the chairmanship of Mr. Dharmendra Pradhan, Minister of State(IC), Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas in New Delhi on March 3, 2016. S. Adaish Partap Singh Kairon, Food Civil Supplies & Consumer Affairs and Information Technology Minister, Punjab participated in this conference. He shared the dais with Mr. Girish Bhalchandra Bapat, Minister, Food Civil Supplies and Consumer Protection, Maharashtra.
This conference was especially convened to discuss preparedness of the States for implementing Direct Benefit Transfer of Kerosene and was attended by the State Food Secretaries.
Giving details of the conference, Mr. Kairon informed Punjab was amongst the first States to take initiative in DBTK in the month of December, 2015 and subsequently decided to launch pilot in TarnTaran, Pathankot and Mohali districts. He further said that government of India would launch DBTK in 33 districts of 9 States, Punjab, Chattisgarh, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Rajasthan & Gujarat w.e.f. 1.4.2016.
He said that Punjab has been constantly striving to plug leakages and diversion of essential commodities and ensure that only the deserving beneficiaries get the benefits of subsidy.
Food Minister, Punjab also showcased the State's preparedness for DBTK and gave a live demonstration of the State Government's portal regarding eligible beneficiaries for kerosene oil. There are about 8 lac such families in the State and details of all these families along with their Aadhaar numbers are available on the portal. The Minister mooted the proposal that since goverment of India is moving towards sunset of distribution of subsidized kerosene oil through PDS, it would be better to make the districts selected for DBTK, kerosene free by providing LPG connections to all the beneficiaries.
This Endeavour would be a Cost effective and environment friendly. He also raised his concern that investing in infrastructure like Point of Sale (PoS) machines in DBTK and later providing LPG to the consumers would entail unnecessary expenditure. This proposal was hugely applauded by the Minister of State(IC), Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas, Government of India, officials of the Petroleum Ministry and the representatives of the participating States.