Srinagar, Mar 08: Amid intermittent and frequent closure of highway, the Valley is facing a huge shortage of domestic LPG in Kashmir.
Talking to Kashmir News Service (KNS), the LPG distributors said that this year, the supply of domestic LPG to valley based distributors has been reduced to 30% of normal consumption of demand, which put the IOCL LPG customer base at lurch.
In all the meetings called upon by local administration regarding domestic LPG supply in valley, a proper and updated feedback was shared with them, they said, adding that the daily monitoring of the food and supplies department regarding LPG supplies itself speaks of huge shortage of IOCL-LPG in Valley.
Though IOCL has got hospitality agreement with HPCL in valley and as per agreement HPCL can refill IOCL-LPG cylinders in case of highway closure from the bulk stocks which IOCL keeps in HPCL plant but as against an average demand of 7000 cylinders per day HPCL plant refill not more than 600 cylinders of IOCL that also intermittently, they added.
The permanent solution to such problem is to make a full-fledged LPG bottling plant in Kashmir valley for which it has been given to understand that some initiative has been taken in this regard to make a tie-up with a local vendor and make some manual mini plant which will take ample time, they suggested.
“Till a proper bottling plant comes up in valley, some other initiatives need to be taken to overcome the IOCL LPG crisis in valley on Ladakh pattern,” they said, adding that Ladakh division has got an approximate three lakh population but being a hilly terrain and highway related issues, IOCL has not only made a proper bottling plant there but also dumps around 80 thousand filed cylinders.
“Kashmir division has got an approximate population of 70 lakhs but IOCL neither has made a bottling plant here nor dumps any filed cylinders to overcome the shortage during the highway closure in spite of having more than three lakh customer base in valley,” they added.
“Till any of the suggested action is implemented, it has become inevitable to fill the huge gap of shortage, which can be achieved by hiring a good number of private trucks for time being and pushing them with filed LPG cylinders into valley as was done during 2014 floods,” they added.