Union Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan has said that oil marketing companies (OMC) have taken a slew of measures to assist the people affected by cyclone Titli and the subsequent floods in Odisha. The OMCs deployed all the resources at their command and ensured uninterrupted supply of petroleum products in the areas affected by floods, the Union Minister said in a letter to Odisha Food Supplies and Consumer Welfare Minister S N Patro on Monday. Pradhan said the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas and public sector oil marketing companies had immediately taken stock of the damage due to the cyclone and the floods in Odisha. "I myself visited the flood-affected areas in Ganjam and Gajapati districts," he said. Patro in a letter had urged the Union Petroleum minister to provide LPG cylinders free of cost to beneficiaries of Pradhan Mantri Ujjawala Yojana (PMUY) in calamity-hit Gajapati, Ganjam and Rayagada districts.
"The OMCs will make arrangements for providing cylinders in lieu of lost cylinders during flood," Pradhan said. For BPL families, the OMCs will charge a nominal Rs 200 per cylinder, while the manufacturing cost of Rs 1,200 will be charged per cylinder from APL families, he said. The Union minister said that the OMCs will organise special camps for LPG customers for suppling documents on priority basis to people who have lost their documents. Similar assistance had been provided by his ministry in collaboration with OMCs in Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Jammu and Kashmir during floods in those states and the local people had widely appreciated these measures, he said. Patro, in his letter to Pradhan, had stated that people in Gajapati, Ganjam and Rayagada were the "worst sufferers" and unable to pay the subsidised rate for the cylinders. "I would request you to waive off the subsidised cost of the domestic LPG cylinders and supply the same free of cost, which will help in ameliorating the sufferings of the poor beneficiaries in the three districts," the letter read.