Cooking gas distributors are threatening to go on strike on October 1, opposing the restriction on sale of subsidised cylinders.
The federation will be holding a meeting of around 1,200 dealers and member-associations tomorrow. "Without consulting us, wrong policies are being adopted that will create a black market and promote unfair trade practices," said Pawan Soni, general secretary, National Federation of LPG Distributors of India [ Images ].
He told Business Standard they wanted the government to streamline the distribution network before taking a decision on capping subsidised cylinders. The problem, distributors indicated, was with the existing infrastructure they have to cope with, not the government's authority to take such a decision.
"It is a policy decision of the government with which we have no fight. We have no issues with the government charging market price for all cylinders. Giving of subsidy is a government prerogative," clarified Soni.
Among the things the distributors want is revision of the commission of Rs 25.83 a cylinder that oil marketing companies give them. This was earlier revised in 2010. "We have about 200,000 delivery men in the country that get just Rs 8 a cylinder," said Soni.
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs had on September 13 decided that consumers of domestic LPG cylinder would get a subsidy for only six refills. Subsidised cylinders are priced currently at Rs 399 in this city, while the non-subsidised cylinders will cost around Rs 750.