Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas
Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi will launch Ujjwala 2.0 (Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana – PMUY)
Key Highlights of Ujjwala2.0
- In the Union budget for FY 21-22, provision for an additional one crore LPG connection under the PMUY scheme was announced.
- These one crore additional PMUY connections (under Ujjwala 2.0) aim to provide deposit-free LPG connections to those low-income families who could not be covered under the earlier phase of PMUY.
- Along with a deposit free LPG connection, Ujjwala 2.0 will provide first refill and hotplate free of cost to the beneficiaries.
- Also, the enrollment procedure will require minimum paperwork.
- In Ujjwala 2.0, migrants will not be required to submit ration cards or address proof.
- A self-declaration for both ‘family declaration’ and as a ‘proof of address’ will suffice. Ujjwala 2.0 will help achieve the Prime Minister’s vision of universal access to LPG.
Tagline: “Swachh Indhan, Behtar Jeevan“
- Union Government has launched a social welfare scheme “Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana” (PMUY) on 1st May 2016 under the leadership
- The scheme envisages of smoke free Rural India and aims to benefit five crore families especially the women living below poverty line (BPL) by providing concessional LPG connections to entire nation by 2019.
- The scheme will increase the usage of LPG and would help in reducing health disorders, air pollution and deforestation.
- Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas is implementing the scheme.
Why such scheme needed:
In India, the poor have limited access to cooking gas (LPG). The spread of LPG cylinders has been predominantly in the urban and semi-urban areas with the coverage mostly in middle class and affluent households. But there are serious health hazards associated with cooking based on fossil fuels. According to WHO estimates, about 5 lakh deaths in India alone due to unclean cooking fuels. Most of these premature deaths were due to non-communicable diseases such as heart disease, stroke, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and lung cancer. Indoor air pollution is also responsible for a significant number of acute respiratory illnesses in young children. According to experts, having an open fire in the kitchen is like burning 400 cigarettes an hour.
Providing LPG connections to BPL households will ensure universal coverage of cooking gas in the country. This measure will empower women and protect their health. It will reduce drudgery and the time spent on cooking. It will also provide employment for rural youth in the supply chain of cooking gas.
- Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) approved Rs 8000 crore for the next 3 years.
- Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana will provide 5 crore LPG connections to BPL families, with the financial support of Rs 1600.
- Budget Speech of 2016 had announced about the scheme and made a budgetary provision of Rs 2000 crore in the current Financial Year (FY).
- Connections will be issued on the name of women beneficiaries.
- EMI facility will also be provided for stove and refill cost.
- It is complimentary to Prime Minister’s Give It Up campaign under which 75 lakh middle class and lower middle class households have voluntarily given up their cooking gas subsidy.
- To promote women empowerment
- To provide a healthy cooking fuel
- To prevent hazards health related issues among the millions of rural population due to use of fossil fuel.
Budget and Funding
Total budget allocation of Rs. 8000 crore has been made by the Government for implementation of the scheme over three years starting from FY 2016-17. The Government has already assigned Rs. 2000 crore for implementation of PMUY 2016-2017. Government will distribute LPG connections to about 1.5 crore BPL families within the current financial year.
The scheme will be implemented using the money saved in LPG subsidy through the “Give-it-Up” campaign. The Indian Government has so far saved nearly Rs. 5,000 crore in LPG subsidy. Since the launch of “Give-it-Up” campaign, 1.13 crore people have given-up subsidies and are buying LPG cylinders at market price.
The scheme provides a financial support of Rs. 1600 for each LPG connection to the eligible BPL households. The connections under the scheme will be given in the name of women head of the households. The government will also provide EMI facility.
- The applicant should be women above the age of 18 years.
- The applicant must be a rural inhabitant carrying a BPL card.
- The women applicant should have a saving bank account in any nationalized bank across the country to receive subsidy amount.
- The applicant’s household should not already own a LPG connection.
Under the scheme, an adult woman belonging to a poor family not having LPG connection in her household, is an eligible beneficiary under the expanded scheme.
Release of LPG connection under this Scheme shall be in the name of the women belonging to the BPL family.
Initially, the Government covered the following categories under the Scheme :-
- Beneficiaries listed in the SECC 2011 list
- All SC/STs households beneficiaries of Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana(PMAY) (Gramin)
- Antyoday Anna Yojana (AAY)
- Forest dwellers
- Most Backward Classes (MBC)
- Tea & Ex-Tea Garden Tribes
- People residing in Islands
- People residing in river islands.
Achievements of Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana:
- The initial target of 5 crore connections was achieved well before the target i.e. 31st March, 2019. According to the official PMUY website, by January 2019, 64 million LPG connections have been provided under the Ujjwala scheme, resulting in it being considered one of the most successful and effective social sector programmes in India.
- Under the PMUY the average per capita consumption is 3.28 cylinders. This should be seen as a positive change in the lives of these households which were long dependent on the traditional cooking fuels and methods.
- LPG Panchayats are being observed to promote learning through peer group interaction – Kuch Seekhein, Kuch Sikhayein, where apart from experience sharing, it also aims at safe and sustained usage of LPG. Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) as on date have conducted 59,960 nos. of LPG Panchayats and safety clinics for education and awareness programs among PMUY beneficiaries.
- To make LPG affordable to poor families, OMCs have introduced 5 Kg refill option to Ujjwala beneficiaries where in Ujjwala beneficiary can swap 14.2 Kg cylinder with 5 Kg refill and vice versa.
- PMUY implementation has been appreciated by the World Health Organization (WHO) and termed it as a decisive intervention to check the indoor health pollution being faced by the women of the country.
Some issues concerning the scheme:
- Issue of refill and affordability: Refilling of LPG gas connections saw a fall in refill from 35000 in 2016-17 to 13000 in 2018. Also, several complaints of affordability was raised as a reluctance of adoption was shown. While the number of LPG connections across India has increased by an impressive 16.26% since the scheme was launched, the use of gas cylinders increased by only 9.83%.
- Behavioural Limitations: It requires behavioural changes as it is difficult to give up on age old practices of using traditional chulhas with a lack of awareness among people regarding benefits of use of LPG gases.
- Inactive and corrupt uses: Many inactive accounts were identified, with some accounts bearing false beneficiaries using LPG for commercial and profitable purposes.
Significance of Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana:
- Health: Research showed that people using solid biomass frequently suffer from headaches, nausea, chronic bronchitis and many skin diseases. Indoor air pollution and acute respiratory illnesses caused by it were observed in most rural women.
- Women empowerment: Ujjwala has empowered women and protected them and their families through the use of clean burning fuel by helping prevent a significant number of acute respiratory illnesses and other ailments.
- Safety: Women going to the forests for collecting firewood are also often exposed to health and safety issues, even sexual harassment at times. This is considerably decreased as a result of the LPG connections.
- Economic empowerment: Release of LPG connection under this Scheme shall be in the name of the women belonging to the BPL family enabling the subsidy provision in the women’s account. Also, using LPG saves time for women as they do not have to collect solid fuel and then use it for cooking, with this cooking time can be effectively used in other economic activities. Women in many villages formed self-help groups to indulge in community economic activities in their free time.
- Environment: There is a definite positive impact on forest cover and the environment from stopping the use of firewood.
- Youth employment: It will also provide employment for rural youth in the supply chain of cooking gas. Employment in the logistics and maintenance services are an additional benefit.