Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Aadhaar now mandatory to get cooking gas subsidy

All LPG consumers have to furnish their Aadhaar card details by November 30 to continue availing subsidies.

After LPG, the Centre intends to bring Public Distribution System, rural employment guarantee scheme, pensions, Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan and national scholarships in the Aadhaar net. The move is intended to reduce fraud and result in savings for the government.

The step is seen as significant as there are 14 crore registered LPG users. In addition to that, oil firms will assist enrolment of consumers without Aadhaar.

If one connection per family with an average of four members is seen as the norm, the move will help target subsidies impacting more than 50 crore individuals.

The petroleum ministry issued the notification mandating Aadhaar on Monday following enactment of a new law which allowed the government to direct use of the UID number for availing of any benefits that required spending from the Central exchequer. "Care has been taken that those who do not have an Aadhaar number get time and facilities to acquire one. There are alternate IDs that will work and oil companies will provide enrolment facilities," said Unique Identification Authority of India chief executive officer Ajay Bhushan Pandey.

"Individuals desirous of LPG subsidies are hereby required to furnish proof of possession of Aadhaar or undergo Aadhaar authentication," the notification said. It also said that those who did not posses a number should visit the nearest enrolment centre. And, in areas where there are no centres oil marketing companies have been asked to provide the facility. The use of Aadhaar for LPG subsidy has not been mandated in Assam, Meghalaya and Jammu and Kashmir.

Till the time of Aadhaar enrolment, an individual would be entitled to subsidy if she presents a bank photo passbook or an Aadhaar enrolment slip if she is enrolled. The notification also said that other ID proofs such as a passport, driving licences, voter ID along with the request for enrolment would do. A third option is for an individual to give an undertaking that he or she is not availing of subsidy using another consumer number of any oil marketing company.

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