Indian Oil Corporation (IndianOil) is fully geared to meet additional demand for LPG coking gas in the country that may arise in the course of the ongoing COVID-19 crisis. The Corporation has tied up additional imports of the product for April and May (to the tune of about 50% over normal imports) to ensure uninterrupted availability of bulk LPG for its bottling plants.
IndianOil is taking steps to increase LPG production in its major refineries by optimising operations, improving LPG yield in LPG producing units like FCC/IndMax, etc. The Corporation's LPG bottling plants too are working extended hours, operating night shifts and on public holidays/Sundays, to meet the growing demand. The transport infrastructure linking the plants to the distributors has also been optimised for quick turnaround of cylinders.
Thanks to the coordinated efforts of the supply points and the marketing network, IndianOil could deliver more than 3.38 crore LPG cylinders to its customers in the last 15 days since lockdown, that is, 26 lakh cylinders every single working day.
Despite lockdown/curfew/containment and various other restrictions on movement imposed by various State/District administrations, IndianOil's LPG distributors and delivery boys are going the extra mile to ensure timely delivery of LPG cylinders to the doorsteps of customers in the safest possible way. People across the supply chain are practicing high standard of hygiene and sanitisation and are using masks & gloves while handling & delivering cylinders.
While assuring its customers across the country of adequate LPG supplies, IndianOil has appealed to them not to resort to panic-booking or visit the showrooms and godowns of their LPG distributorships for obtaining refills. They can book for LPG refills from their own homes through SMS/IVRS, WhatsApp (75888-88824) and take delivery at their doorstep. Payments can also be made online through the Corporation's Mobile App, IndianOilOne, or portal (https://cx.indianoil.in ), or through the payment link sent to the customers in the SMS after refill booking, to avoid cash-handling and minimising person-to-person contact. The LPG emergency helpline number 1906 is also fully functional.
The Corporation has taken steps to cover its packed and bulk LPG truck drivers, LPG delivery boys, etc., at the frontline of its business under a medical insurance policy, which will also include any COVID-19 related ailments. Over 1.1 lakh people will be covered under this scheme, including the families of the insured. Similarly, for tank-truck crew and delivery boys manning the supply chain, IndianOil is also looking at providing an ex-gratia Covid-19 insurance cover of Rs. 5 lakhs in case of death due to Covid-19. The amount is payable to the next of kin of the deceased.
Free refills for PMUY customers
IndianOil has advised its distributors to give priority refill deliveries to LPG customers under Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY), for whom the Government of India has extended the facility of three LPG refills free of cost during the months April, May and June 2020.
As part of this, the Corporation has already initiated the transfer of the RSP for the first LPG refill to the bank accounts linked by its PMUY customers for direct subsidy payments. Accordingly, a total amount of over Rs. 2,780 crore is being transferred to the bank accounts of about 3.7 crore PMUY customers, and the process is likely to be completed in the next two days. PMUY customers who have taken delivery of a refill in April prior to the transfer of money in their bank account will also be eligible to book for a free refill after 15 days' gap.
In view of COVID-19 lock-down, the LPG distributors will not insist upon hard copy/copies of any document required from the PMUY customers. The required documents can be captured digitally and hard copies submitted after the lock-down is lifted for maintenance of proper records.
John Prasad K.
Chief General Manager
Indian Oil Corporation Ltd.