Cash Transfer Scheme In lieu Of Kerosene May Be Delayed
Direct Transfer of Cash Subsidy (DTCS), proposed by the Central Government in lieu of kerosene through public distribution network, could be delayed enormously in the State due to recalcitrance on part of Fair Price Shop (FPS) dealers.
Though the dealers were asked three months ago to collect bank account details of beneficiaries in five chosen districts in which a pilot project was proposed to be implemented, not even 10 per cent of the account numbers have arrived so far, say sources from the Civil Supplies department. As a result, the scheme proposed to be implemented from August, will have to be postponed further.
The DTCS scheme proposes to transfer the subsidy component of kerosene price to the beneficiary’s account enabling him to buy it in open market. Kerosene is supplied through FPS at Rs.15 per litre. While the quota is four litres per card per month in urban areas and two litres in rural areas, for those who obtained LPG connections under ‘Deepam’ scheme, the quota is only a litre per month.
Allegations are rife that the FPS dealers embezzle over 40 per cent of the allotted quotas, which remain unclaimed every month. To curb these unethical practices, the DTCS scheme was mooted in which role of FPS dealers is eliminated.
The scheme is to be implemented on a pilot basis in 10 States namely Kerala, Pondicherry, Himachal Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Sikkim, Andhra Pradesh, Goa, Maharashtra, and Jharkhand. Hyderabad, Ranga Reddy, Anantapur, Chittoor, and East Godavari have been chosen for pilot implementation in Andhra Pradesh as Aadhar enumeration is more or less complete in all these districts.
Currently, 54.42 lakh beneficiaries are to be covered under the scheme in these districts and they get nearly 11,000 KL of kerosene.
Currently, the State’s quota of kerosene stands at 38, 820 KLs.
“At least 70 per cent of the BPL families now have bank accounts, thanks to various government schemes. The FPS dealers are unwilling to lose their quota. Stringent measures need to be taken to make them fall in line,” an official said.