New Delhi: After the success of the Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana that set a target of providing 50,000,000 LPG connections to women below the poverty line, the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas now has decided to take the message down to the last mile.
Speaking exclusively to a national news channel , the newly elevated Cabinet minister, Dharmendra Pradhan, under whose able watch PM Ujjwala Yojana was rolled out, said the Centre is preparing the launch of a new ambitious programme, Pradhan Mantri LPG Panchayats ahead of Dusshera this year.
“We will go to women and organise panchayats. Women leaders from all walks of life including anganwadi workers, social leaders, political activists, anganwadi workers, among others will be relied on to create awareness that LPG is clean and cheap,” the minister said.
“The alternative to LPG – cowdung and firework – costs roughly about Rs1000. LPG, costs Rs650 a month,” Pradhan explained.
He said the Centre wanted to empower women at a time their contribution was going unrecognised. “If a woman goes to the forest and spends 6 hours collecting firewood and coming back, shouldn’t that be counted as contribution towards GDP? Unfortunately it isn’t”, the Petroleum Minister highlighted.
In a country of 210 million LPG consumers, it remains to be seen what far-reaching effects of this latest initiative has, especially in the backdrop of the dividends the PM Ujjwala Yojana has had for the government at the Centre and states.
Dharmendra Pradhan also took charge of the Ministry of Skill Development today. Speaking to India Today, he acknowledged that jobs creation will be a challenge.