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Mann Ki Baath: No ‘Silent Revolution’ Behind LPG Surrender?

Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his Mann Ki Baath radio program pondered the silent revolution in LPG subsidy surrender by rich people in favour of BPL families.

Among the other things, he said 30 lakh people have given up LPG subsidy describing it a silent revolution. “Is this not a silent revolution? Is not reflective of people’s power? Governments also should learn that beyond the realms of government, there is a big capable, energetic and committed society. The more the governments remain connected to the society, the more it can work as a catalyst to bring changes in the society,” Modi said.

But the oil companies, which are not privatised but under the government control are still caught in the old bureaucratic mindset. Indane, for instance, has launched a robust online booking system last year but when it comes to complaints, the feedback goes beyond the screen and unfriendly. No simple way to know FAQs to book a complaint. Out of 6079 complaints made online, only 32 were resolved on Consumercomplaints.in.

Secondly, the gas booking interface provides no remedy if one misses the unannounced delivery of LPG gas at home in cities. What to do when you miss? Skip your office, go to the dealer and he will brush you aside or ask you to book again and wait for one more week. “With no FAQs concept in these government websites, there is still a wide gap between an LPG distributor and the so-called beneficiary,” complains an IT consultant Srinivas Rajula. “All it takes is half-an -hour coding,” he insists.

Why not the Prime Minister ask these state-run monopolies to be pro-active and provide alternatives to problems that consumers face, asks another common woman. “Unless distributors of oil companies are forced to be consumer-friendly, no talk about surrender of subsidy will work,” said Vanitha, who was in a big queue in front of an Indane distributor’s office to enquire about her missed LPG cylinder delivery. “If somebody has surrendered, it could be because of the hardships meted out to them by distributors and delivery boys,” she said wryly. There it is!


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