Bhubaneswar: Soon after Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited Odisha on May 6 to take stock of the grim situation in the aftermath of Cyclone FANI (landfall on May 3), Union Petroleum Minister has been regularly reviewing the situation and today claimed that the supply of petrol and disesel has become normal.
He also informed that same normalcy is with the supply of LPG and CNG, stock of kerosene is adequate to meet the requirements while the oil companies have started mobile diesel tanker service in the affected districts for smooth running of generator sets at the government offices, banks and telecom services.
Briefing media today soon after his daily review, Union Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said, “Post Cyclone FANI, three districts of Odisha have been extremely affected. The three districts are Puri, Khurda and Cuttack. These three districts have 234 petrol pumps of three companies-IOC, BPCL and HPCL. Till date, 232 petrol pumps have started functioning and supplying petrol and diesel to the customers. Two petrol pumps of HPCL will start functioning by tomorrow. Thus, 100% normalcy of petrol pumps has been restored within a week after the cyclone.”
He remarked, “There is still a bit of pressure in Puri city now. Long queue of two wheelers is being observed yet while it has gradually eased out in Brahmagiri, Nimapara, Satyabadi, etc areas.”
“In a bid to make it more accessible, our three petroleum companies have started a service for the DG sets of government institutions, telecom companies, banks, 8 mobile disesel tankers, having provision of nozzle like petrol pumps for supplying a litre to 500 litres. We are making it available in consultation with the district administration,” the Union Petroleum Minister informed.
He also argued, “In Puri district everyday 300 KL (3 lakh litres) used to be sold prior to the cyclone. Around 30,000-40,000 two-wheelers to buses used to fill petrol and diesel. As per yesterday’s (May 9) statistics, this district has touched the same target. It means petrol and diesel are now easily available there.”
“Out of the total 234 petrol pumps in the three extremely affected districts, 200 petrol pumps had been damaged less or more. Hence, we have prepared a plan to make them all perfectly well by the upcoming rainy season,” he assured.
The Petroleum Minister further stated, “One more big responsibility of the petroleum sector is that of supply of LPG. In Puri district there are 34 LPG dealers and all are working, in Khurda district 69 dealers are there and all of them are delivering. In Cuttack district there are 59 distributors and they are also delivering.”
He argued, “Old statistics reveals that 4000 cylinders are availed by the customers in Puri district daily. Yesterday’s statistics states that 5,700 cylinders were distributed in Puri district. In Khurda district 13,000 cylinders used to be availed by the customers daily. Now it has reached 16,000. In Cuttack district 9,300 cylinders used to be distributed earlier, now it has touched 11,100 yesterday. The stock assessment made by us makes it clear that stock is readily available. LPG availability is adequate.”
“So far kerosene oil is concerned, responsibility of the wholesaler is with us while the retailing is with the State Government. We have adequate stock of kerosene. Whenever the State Government will decide to supply kerosene in relief, we have stocked it even at the low level of our organization,” assured the Union Petroleum Minister.
He further said, “I would like to thank all our petroleum companies for maintaining the service despite the challenges and trouble faced by the petrol pumps as well as the service delivery manpower owing to the cyclone.”
“My special thanks to IOCL on behalf of Odisha for extending its helping hand to the Puri Sri Mandir with Rs 5 crore cheques as the temple administration had revealed that it has borne a loss of such amount due to the ravaging cyclone,” remarked he.
Responding to media query, the Petroleum Minister replied, “CNG is available as usual. There is no problem.”