The Government has launched a portal called Sahaj on MyLPG.in to let citizens book an LPG connection and make payments for the connection online. This service will be available for citizens in Delhi, Ahmedabad, Bengaluru, Bhopal, Bhubaneshwar, Chandigarh, Chennai, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Lucknow, Mumbai, Patna and Pune for now, and will be launched across the country in the next few days. Note that the portal states that it is maintained by the ‘respective oil marketing companies’.
Dharmendra Pradhan, state minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas said that the Petroleum Ministry’s initiatives in the last 7 months had extended LPG coverage. According to the PIB release, 2.5 million Indians had given up LPG cylinder subsidy, and that 2.2 million new LPG connections had been issued to BPL (below poverty line) households from January to July this year.
Through the MyLPG portal, which is available on a phone, tablet and computer, users can book their cylinders, register for a new connection, track cylinder booking and delivery dates, choose the distributor, Aadhaar linking status, monitor LPG subsidy transferred to bank and surrender their connection online. It has been created by the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas along with oil marketing companies like Indane, Bharat Gas and HP Gas.
A TOI report states that after a new application for an LPG connection is received, the system will automatically detect a dealer best suited for the user and email or message them the customer ID number, within 48 hours of application. Once this number is received, the user can pay online, after which the the system makes a duplication check. Post that, the dealer will deliver the regulator, cylinder and rubber pipe to a new user. Apparently, the whole process will take 6-7 days.
Transparency portals of oil marketing companies became MyLPG
Way back in 2012, state owned oil marketing companies Indian Oil, Bharat Petroleum and Hindustan Petroleum setup LPG transparency portals, offering data on the last mile delivery of domestic LPG cylinders supplied by them to nearly 14 crore households in the country. The portal could be accessed through the official website of the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas and through respective oil marketing company websites. These transparency portals were later renamed to MyLPG.
10 crore Aadhaar cards linked to bank accounts
In December last year, the Planning Commission said that 10 crore Aadhaar numbers had been linked to bank accounts of said card holders as a part of the government’s Digital India mission. According to the agency, this would help it identify genuine beneficiaries and send government welfare subsidies directly into their bank accounts. Once Aadhaar linked, it would be used by the government to pay various subsidies like for LPG cylinders, MNREGA workers, PDS, scholarship and remittance.
Bharatgas subsidy list and its privacy concerns
In May, as part of its initiative to encourage LPG users to pay market price and not avail the LPG subsidy provided by the government, Bharatgas put up a list of customers who opted out on a ‘Scroll of Honour’ on its website. However, this move compromised consumer privacy as one could simply select a state and district to get a list of Bharatgas customers who opted out of the subsidy scheme and their addresses.
Our Digital India coverage here.
Image Credit: Flickr user Pranav Prakash