Union Ministers Dharmendra Pradhan, Uma Bharati  joined Ujjwala Swabhiman Utsav with beneficiaries at 30 districts in Odisha through video conference at New Delhi

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 New Delhi: Ujjwala Swabhiman Utsav is celebrated today at 30 districts in Odisha. At each location Ujjwala Rath was stationed to show socially relevant messages and videos at village level. Ujjwala Raths have been deployed in the thirty districts of Odisha for over one year. During the Utsav videos on Ujjwala and LPG Safety were shown.

Local Ujjwala customers and Ujjwala Didi were sharing their experiences, their journey on how easing their burden of cooking responsibilities allowed them to explore other dimensions of their personality and the new roles they are able to play. One desk was also set up with a display complete of LPG installation; KYC forms were also kept by a LPG Distributor so that any one interested in getting a new connection can get complete information on the same. TRANSFORMATION OF LPG ECOSYSTEM IN ODISHA 1. The number of connections under Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY) has now crossed 6 crore across the country. This has taken the all India LPG penetration from 56% in July’ 2014 to 90 % now in national level.2. Number of LPG customers has more than tripled from 20.22 Lakhs (1st June 2014) to 75 lakhs in Odisha at present.3. Tripling of the number of LPG customers in Odisha during April 2014 to April 2018 can mostly be attributed to PMUY- which did away with the barrier of high upfront costs in acquiring a new LG connection. 4. LPG Penetration in the State of Odisha has gone up from  20% ( As on 1st June 2014  to 71.5 %  (as on 01.02.2019) o Total PMUY connections released – 37 lakhs (As on 01.02.2019 ) . o No. of connections released to SC/ST–18.49 Lakhs
5. Distributor strength has more than doubled.  From 367 ( April 2014) to 863 ( 1st Feb 2019) 6. Focus has been on adding more SC/ST  Distributor – their number has also more than doubled from 66 ( June 2014) to 149  (Jan 2019) 7. Bottling Capacity for LPG Cylinders doubled from 1.5 crore cylinders per year      ( April 2016) to 3 crore cylinders per year (Jan 2019).The aim is to have all the households in Odisha have access to clean fuel- LPG. Since we have already reached 75 lakh households, the aim is to add 5 lakh-  8 lakh more customers till 31st Mar 2019.
• Clean Cooking Fuel is to be universally available • Clean Cooking fuel is affordable• LPG is safe to use and insured
A MOVEMENT TOWARDS WELL BEINGThe movement towards cleaner fuel adoption is a work in progress.  Conduct of LPG safety clinics and LPG Panchayats are contributing towards promoting safe and regular use. In the medium term the Petroleum Ministry and oil marketing companies need to continue their focus on enhancing delivery points, improving service, safety and educating communities about benefits of cleaner fuel. Women need to create a space for themselves within the household budget as often they are seen as the most immediate beneficiary of expenditure on cleaner fuel. Households need to align their cash flows with the expenditure on LPG to improve their ability to sustain the use of LPG. Civil society groups and Self help groups could lead in innovations in refill financing and enhancing opportunities to convert the time women are saving into cash income. Ladies and Gentlemen, Ujjwala does not magically make life perfect for its customers but it builds a mood of possibility, development and inspiration. It has triggered a range of grassroots’ level small and big economic enterprises across our villages and small towns.  It has shifted the balance of power in favour of women. It allows women to express their full potential.  When we listen to the stories of women leaders, we realise managing and sharing household responsibilities has been very important in their development. A convenient cooking fuel makes managing household easier.

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