ONI Bureau: Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan while informing the Cabinet decision to expand the Ujjwala beneficiary cover to 8 crore from 5 crore, also claimed that the government has achieved the target of 3 crore well before the deadline.
“The PM Ujjwala Yojana was announced in March 2016 with a target to cover 5 crore people. It was dedicated to public in June 2016. The target was set at 3 crore beneficiaries by the end of 2017-18 financial year, which ends on March 31. However, the government has already achieved the target by providing LPG connections to 3.36 crore people,” he said.
While expanding the target, the Government has approved to expand the Scheme to cover all SC/ST households, beneficiaries of PMAY (Gramin), Antyoday Anna Yojana (AAY), Forest dwellers, Most Backward Classes (MBC), Tea and Ex-Tea Garden Tribes, people residing in Islands and rivers etc. in addition to SECC identified households.
The Centre has approved a budget of Rs 4,800 crore towards expansion of PM Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY).
“Odisha will get a lion’s share under the expanded scheme, as SCs/STs constitute 40% of the total population in the state and many live in 480km long coastal belt, Islands and rivers,” Dharmendra Pradhan said.