A majority of rural consumers will soon be able to get home delivery of cooking gas cylinders. The government is likely to issue an order soon mandating that all cooking gas distributors serving rural areas and with sales exceeding 1,500 refills a month provide home delivery of cylinders to their customers, an oil ministry official said. So far, all of about 5,500 dealers under Rajiv Gandhi Gramin LPG Vitran (RGGLV) scheme, a government programme for rural distribution of cooking gas, were exempt from making home deliveries of cylinders. The imminent government order will change that for about 60% of RGGLV dealers, the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity.
The order, however, will not impact regular dealers, who were not appointed under the RGGLV scheme, but still serve a section of rural consumers. India has about 18,000 cooking gas distributors in all, most of them concentrated in urban areas. The oil companies plan to add 10,000 distributors, the process of whose appointment will begin in this financial year. The government is now focused on increasing the access to clean fuel among rural households. It aims to add 100 million consumers in three years to the existing national base of about 167 million. New consumers will mostly come from the country’s interiors, where access and affordability have been impediments to subscription and consumption.
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