HC directs state govt to explain scarcity of cooking gas


IMPHAL | Nov 10: The High Court of Manipur has today directed the state government, Indian Oil Corporation Limited (IOCL) and gas agencies of the state to submit a report within six week for the hearing after a PIL case was filed against them by one Prasanta Oinam.

The petitioner’s counsel submitted before the division bench of the High Court comprising of acting chief justice, N. Kotiswar and justice Kh. Nobin that in the state the supply and distribution of the domestic LPG cylinder at present is controlled and managed by IOCL which is a government oil company under section 2 (g) of the LPG (regulation of supply and distribution) according to an order passed in the year 2000.

In 2014 in a relief to the consumer the government of India, Ministry of Petroleum and natural gas revised the limit of subsidized LPG to 11 numbers for the year ending March 31, 2014 and further with 12 number of subsidised LPG Gas cylinder per annum with effect from April 1, 2014, added the counsel.

The counsel further submitted that the subsidized LPG cylinders for the domestic cooking purpose is available in 14.2 kg capacity cylinders and is distributed only through authorised LPG distributors of IOCL.

But the decision of  the government of India never came into reality in the state of Manipur as the respondents who are responsible for shorting out the scarcity of LPG gas by providing minimum numbers of LPG gas through authorised LPG distributors are playing a blame game and remain idle without taking any responsibilities on their parts, continued the counsel.

While on the other hand, the LPG gas are readily available in black markets at a relatively higher price throughout the year as the price of the subsidized LPG gas is Rs 483.50 and the non-subsidized LPG Gas is 862, and the same are sold at a price range of Rs. 1,500 to 3,000 in black market, maintained the counsel.

It is further submitted that non supply of minimum required LPG gas cylinders for the household has also directly affected the economy of the family and it is shocking that the subsidised domestic LPG cylinders of IOCL are abundantly available in the black markets.

It clearly shows that the domestic LPGs which are entitled to the consumers have been diverted to black markets by the respondents, said the counsel.

The counsel prayed before the court to institute a CBI inquiry regarding the matter for taking up action against those responsible for the scarcity as well as black marketing.

Source: Imphal Free Press


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