Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY)

Context:

• The Minister of State for Petroleum and Natural Gas, Shri Rameswar Teli in a written reply to a question in the Rajya Sabha today informed that the Government launched Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY) in 2016 to provide clean cooking fuel to poor households and the target to provide 8 crore deposit free LPG connections was achieved in September, 2019.
• To cover remaining households under PMUY, Ujjwala 2.0 was started on 10th August, 2021 on pan India basis to provide additional one crore LPG connections along with free first refill and stove.

About:

• In May 2016, Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas (MOPNG), introduced the ‘Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana’ (PMUY) as a flagship scheme with an objective to make clean cooking fuel such as LPG available to the rural and deprived households which were otherwise using traditional cooking fuels such as firewood, coal, cow-dung cakes etc.
• Usage of traditional cooking fuels had detrimental impacts on the health of rural women as well as on the environment.
• The distribution of 8 crore LPG connections to households has increased the coverage from 62% in 2016 to 99% in 2021.

Success Story:

• One of the under acknowledged achievements of the scheme is its role in reducing the indoor pollution.
• Indoor pollution has worst impacts on the respiratory health of the women especially in the rural areas.
• Household biomass burning has its immediate effects on the women and also other members of the family.

Way Forward:

• An enlightened government would focus even more on universal access to cleaner fuels like LPG, while encouraging increased usage by emphasizing health benefits, thus making it a signature programme that promotes not only social justice, but also environmental justice.

Source: THE HINDU

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