Objective, Feature and Challenges of PMUY Plan
Prime Minister Ujjwala Plan is a plan of the Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas to distribute LPG cylinders for the empowerment of women. Prior to discussing this issue, we must first examine the need of implementing this plan. The rural areas in India have little access to cooking gas (LPG) as they don’t have much economic support. The majority of middle-class and wealthy homes have LPG cylinder coverage, which has been concentrated in metropolitan and semi-urban regions. However, using fossil fuels in the villages for cooking has major health risks. Providing LPG connections to BPL families through PMUP guaranteed that cooking gas is available to everyone in the nation and it played a huge role in strengthening women and safeguarding their health.
- LPG Cylinders: Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) cylinder is the finest way to cook food without any hassle. A cylinder filled with LPG gas has to connect with a burner for cooking purposes.
Prime Minister Ujjwala Plan was first launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 1st May 2016 in Ballia, Uttar Pradesh. The primary target of this scheme is to provide LPG cylinder connections to the women who are Below Poverty Line (BPL). Using firewood as fuel for cooking can damage their health. In this scheme, it was targeted to distribute 15 million LPG connections to women. In April 2018, the program’s eligibility criteria were amended to include women who fell into categories of SC/ST, beneficiaries of Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana, and Antyodaya Anna Yojana, Most Backward Classes, Tea Garden, Forest Dwellers, and Islands. For this purpose, the Central Government of India allotted 8000 Cr. for the implementation of this scheme.
Objectives of PMUP:
- The objective of the scheme is to provide clean cooking fuel solutions to poor households, especially in rural areas.
- To promote the health and empowerment of women.
- To reduce pollution by fossil fuels, which can lead to lung problems and other environmental issues.
Features and Benefits:
The scheme will provide access to LPG Cylinders to 5 crore households in the country. In this scheme, the government will pay Rs.1600 for every cylinder connection for the next 3 years. It has been reported that after launching this scheme in just one year, 22 million connections had been done and the target was only 15 million connections. After that newly, 30 million connections had been done. This is a growing scheme and many BPL women are getting help from this scheme.
Under this scheme, the LPG connection will be released in the name of the adult woman of the BPL family, however, it will be subjected to the condition that no LPG connection should exist in the name of any family member of the household. The eligible families will be identified through the Socio-Economic Caste Census (SECC) list.
The Rural youngsters also get a chance of being employed by this program in the supply chain for cooking gas. It further provides interest-free loans from oil marketing firms to buy stoves and replenish them.
Challenges Before the Scheme:
- As per the CEEW study done across Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Odisha, Madhya Pradesh, and Jharkhand, it is found that people prefer paying Rs 300 for a 5 kg cylinder rather than paying an upfront amount of Rs 900-1000 for a 14 kg cylinder.
- The main obstacle to providing free LPG connections was the absence of accurate data that could identify disadvantaged families.
- Very few people use LPG for cooking.
- Stacking of LPG and biomass is prevalent in a large number of households.
- Due to their easy affordability, Biomass fuels such as firewood, crop residue, and dung cakes are being preferred over CNG in rural areas.
- Several households lacked essential papers like ration cards and Aadhaar cards.
- Beneficiaries’ knowledge of safety criteria for using an LPG burner is restricted because the majority of them came from low-income, illiterate backgrounds.
Frequently Asked Questions and Answer:
Q1. What is the full form of PMUP?
Ans: The full form of PMUP is Prime Minister Ujjwala Plan.
Q2. Who had launched the Prime Minister Ujjwala Plan?
Ans: Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the Prime Minister Ujjwala Plan on 1st May 2016 in Ballia, Uttar Pradesh.
Q3. Who are the beneficiaries of Prime Minister Ujjwala Plan?
- Prime Minister Ujjwala Plan is going to benefit all the women who belong to BPL.
- All SC/STs households
- Beneficiaries of Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana(PMAY) (Gramin).
- Forest dwellers
- Recipients are registered in the SECC-2011 list.
- Beneficiaries of the Antyoday Anna Yojana
Q4. How much the amount the Central Government of India has to pay for every connection?
Ans: 80 million BPL homes would receive LPG connections under this program, along with the support of Rs. 1,600 per connection that will solely be given to female recipients. The plan would be implemented nationwide with a budget of Rs. 128 billion, and BPL families will be identified using information from SECC-2011.
Q5. What are the eligibility criteria for PMUP?
- The applicant must be a woman who is at least 18 years old and an Indian citizen.
- The applicant must be from a BPL family.
- There shouldn’t be any LPG connections in the applicant’s home.
- The applicant cannot be a participant in any other similar government schemes.
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