Union Minister of State for Railways Rajen Gohain today launched the Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY) in Meghalaya, aimed at providing clean cooking fuel to women belonging to the Below Poverty Line (BPL).
The PMUY aims to provide LPG connections to five crore BPL households by 2019 and is part of a larger programme of adding ten crore new LPG connections by 2019 to achieve full coverage of connections in Indian households.
As a symbolic launch of PMUY in the state, 24 BPL beneficiaries were handed over with deposit-free PMUY LPG connections.
Addressing a gathering on the occasion, Gohain said over 10 crore households in the country are dependent on polluting firewood and cowdung cakes as primary source for their kitchen fire and within a year of the launch the scheme, more than 2.35 crore beneficiaries have been provided with LPG connections.
He said the scheme has also been possible after over one crore consumers responded to the Prime Minister's call to voluntarily give up their subsidised LPG connections.
Gohain emphasised on the Centre's commitment on development of the poorest sections of the society and said PMUY is a part of the Prime Minister's dream of Sabka Saath Sabka Vikas.
Referring to PMUY as a significant step forward towards women empowerment, Meghalaya Health minister Roshan Warjri urged the distributors to focus on customer awareness regarding the utility of LPG as cooking fuel.
As on January 1 this year, Meghalaya has around 6.32 lakh LPG coverage, which is only 23 per cent of the total household in the state.
Six new LPG distributors will soon be added to the the existing 46 in Meghalaya to cater to the surge in LPG consumers in the state, officials said.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)