Sambalpur: Under the aegis of the Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY), launched in Odisha on 20th June, nearly 30 lakh women of poor households in Odisha are set to get free LPG connection over next three years. This was mentioned by Union Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister Dharmendra Pradhan at the state launch of the scheme at Sambalpur in western Odisha.
For the scheme conceived by Prime Minister Narendra Modi as a step towards empowering women belonging to poor households, budgetary allocation has been made to provide poor women relief from smoke, drudgery and disease. The scheme will especially benefit women households situated in Eastern and North-Eastern states. Odisha, which has LPG penetration much below the national average, will be greatly benefited.
In India, the smoke from fire wood, coal, dung cakes etc adversely affects the health of women and as per World Health Organization (WHO) report smoke inhaled by women is equivalent to 400 cigarettes per hour.
Pradhan also claimed that over the next 3 years, 40 lakh households will benefit on account of new connections. Out of the above, 30 lakh will be households belonging to BPL families, he added. The implementation of the scheme will be undertaken by organizing melas in various villages and beneficiaries would be identified based on SECC data, prepared by Government of Odisha.
20 women beneficiaries belonging to 6 districts and one sub division of Angul (Athmalik) were handed over LPG connections under the Ujjwala Yojana by the dignitaries and 870 women members of poor households were handed over LPG connections at the state launch of the scheme.