J&K LG Takes Note Of ‘Irregularities’ In PMUY Scheme

Food & Supplies Dept Ordered To Probe, Submit Report By March 3

Srinagar- The Jammu and Kashmir government on Tuesday ordered an inquiry into the irregularities of much talked Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojna (PMUY) scheme in central Kashmir’s Budgam district.

According to an order, a copy of which lies with Kashmir Observer, J&K Lieutenant Governor, Manoj Sinha had ordered Commissioner/Secretary to the Government, Department of Food, Civil Supplies & Consumer Affairs to probe the matter and file the report by 03 March 2022.

The complaint about the alleged irregularities was filed by Budgam based RTI activist, Mushtaq Ahmad Lone.

“This has reference to an enclosed complaint received in this Secretariat on 26.02.2022 through email ID: [email protected] regarding the improper functioning of PM UJJWALA Scheme in District Budgam. The complainant has also provided relevant links in the said email to support his allegations,” the order reads.

It further says, “In this context, I am desired to request you to kindly get the matter enquired thoroughly and send a report to this Secretariat by 03.03,2022 positively, for perusal of higher authorities,”

Phase one of this scheme was launched in May 2016, benefiting poor families across the country with free LPG connections.

The second phase of Ujjwala Yojna was launched in August 2021 by PM Modi wherein free LPG connections would be given to one crore poor families across India.

A new Ujjwala connection consists of a free cylinder and gas stove and is sanctioned in the name of females of the households enlisted in the SECC-2011 survey list.

However, there were allegations of irregularities in various districts of Kashmir, including the Budgam district.

According to reports, the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) and other audit agencies in the past have continuously raised concerns vis-a-vis implementation of Ujjawala Yojana in some areas pointing towards diversion of subsidized cylinders, non availability of installation records & pre-installation check-ups, lack of validation checks etc.

In the letter written to LG, Lone had mentioned that how Ujjwala scheme is marred by large scale corruption in Jammu & Kashmir that needs to be thoroughly probed.

“In district Budgam our group went to several villages to see whether beneficiaries have received the subsidized gas or not but on the ground we were told that people had to pay for this free LPG,” Lone wrote to LG.

The areas where the people have been asked to pay money for this scheme include Gogji Pathri, Wangwas, Kutbal Jadan, and Chalyan Choontinad village of Chadoora district Budgam.

The RTI activist further claimed to have witnessed large scale bungling in the scheme in Draggar village of Khansahib tehsil

“The local gram sabha has passed the resolution also to probe the issue. People have been made to pay Rs 900, Rs1500, Rs 2000 or Rs 3000 for this free gas. Some people who have not been provided the free gas after filing forms, on their names free gas has been issued but the same has been sold to some other people,” the letter to LG reads.

The Yojana connection comes with provision of 12 LPG refills per year linked with back ended subsidy @ Rs 1600/year.

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Auqib Javeed

Auqib Javeed is special correspondent with Kashmir Observer and tweets @AuqibJaveed

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