Cash subsidy to kerosene users gets EGoM's in-principle nod

An empowered group of ministers has agreed in-principle to grant cash subsidy to the poor for kerosene, as per the recommendations of a task force led by Nandan Nilekani.

However, the scheme would be launched only after consultations with the state governments.

Oil minister Jaipal Reddy said the government could not finalise any programme on kerosene unless it discussed with the state governments.

The EGoM on fuel, headed by finance minister Pranab Mukherjee, met yesterday to consider the recommendations of a task force on direct transfer of subsidies on kerosene, cooking gas and fertiliser headed by Unique ID Authority chairman Nandan Nilekani.

According to government officials, an in-principle decision had been taken with regard to kerosene but no decision could be taken on LPG (cooking gas). Putting an end to subsidies would almost triple the price of kerosene.

To protect the poor, the government would give them cash compensation but only to actual buyers of the fuel.