Govt mulls tweaking LPG cylinder cap from 6 to 9

New Delhi: Government may consider “minor adjustments” on the LPG cylinder cap in the wake of pressure from within the Congress and Trinamool Congress’s decision to withdraw support to the UPA.

Sources said that while there is no question of rollback of the government’s decision to put a cap on the number of subsidized cylinders, the government was ready for minor adjustments on it and can increase the total number of such cylinders per household from the proposed six to nine annually.

An indication to this was available in AICC as voices of dissent emerged even from within the party over the LPG cap.

“This decision is illogical,” said a senior party functionary indicating that there could be modifications into it. Two Union Ministers K V Thomas and Harish Rawat have already expressed their displeasure over the cap.

Food Minister K V Thomas had on Monday written a letter to the Prime Minister saying that the Centre’s move to cap the number of subsidised LPG cylinders at six per household a year “will not go well” with the middle class and suggested a slab system with a marginal hike in price for extra cylinders.

Union Minister Harish Rawat said,” if the number (of subsidized cylinders per household) could have been increased from six and more cylinders would have been made available at the subsidized rate, it would have been better.”

Congress leader and former Union Minister Virbhadra Singh on Monday urged party president Sonia Gandhi to review the decisions to hike the price of diesel by Rs.5 a litre and the cap on supply of subsidised domestic LPG cylinders.

Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit has already increased the number of subsidized LPG cylinders for BPL families from six to nine.

“The party has not stopped them from saying this (their disagreement with the decision on LPG cap). Is this not an indication,” a leader said apparently suggesting that the party favoured the demand for an increase in the number of subsidized cylinders.