Cap on LPG cylinders will curb black marketing: BPCL chief

The government's move to impose a cap on subsidised LPG, of six cylinders a year per family, will help in curbing black marketing in the cooking gas sector, said R K Singh, chairman and managing director, Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd (BPCL).

Singh told reporters that it was ''a brilliant move'' on the part of the government as black marketing is prevalent because of the huge price difference between domestic and commercial LPG cylinders.

The ceiling of six cylinders a year of subsidised LPG would deprive the diversion of domestic cooking gas to the commercial segment, which comprises restaurants and hotels.

The United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government recently imposed curbs on the sale of subsidised LPG to households in order to cut the subsidies on petroleum products. It also raised the price of diesel by Rs5 a litre.

The move has been vehemently criticised by the opposition  Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), the communists and other parties and even by supporters of the UPA.

West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee, who heads the Trinamool Congress, withdrew support to the UPA government last week, criticising the move. However, with Mulayam Singh Yadav's Samajwadi Party offering it outside support, there is no threat to the government's stability.