After making it available at petrol pumps, the convenient 5-kg cooking gas (LPG) cylinder will now be available at kirana stores and supermarkets in select cities.
Indian Oil Corp, the nation's largest fuel retailer, has started selling these cylinders, which are priced at market rates, through a wider range of retail outlets to boost their availability.
"The sale of the 5-kg cylinders from kirana stores and supermarkets has been launched in Bangalore, Chennai, Gorakhpur, Lucknow and Aligarh, to begin with," IOC said in a statement.
In January, oil companies started the sale of the smaller refills at petrol pumps and the new initiative will make LPG available through easily approachable sales points and local corner stores such as kirana shops, retail stores and malls.
In Delhi, the 5-kg cylinder currently costs Rs 437, as against Rs 414 for a 14.2-kg subsidised bottle. The move will benefit the migratory population, such as students, IT professionals, BPO employees and persons with odd work timings.
Customers can enrol for the scheme with ease and pick up the cylinder refills from shops at their own convenience.
"To begin with, sale of the 5-kg cylinders has been launched from 11 kirana stores in five cities, and will be extended to 50 more cities in the near future," IOC said.
For first-time customers, the cost of a new 5-kg cylinder with LPG will be in the range of Rs 1,600 to Rs 1,700, inclusive of the cylinder and pressure regulator, security deposit and administrative charges.
Subsequently, only the cost of the product will be payable while exchanging an empty cylinder for a filled one.
Prospective customers have to provide proof of identity such as a voter card, driving licence, PAN card, Aadhaar card, bank passbook, passport or employee or student ID.
Currently, IOC markets 5-kg cylinders from 52 petrol pumps across 32 cities and now 11 stores have been added. "Increased availability of the cylinders through more points is leading to growth in sales, with approximately 1,500 customers enrolling with IOC till date," the statement said.