Baripada: Under Ujjwala Yojana, LPG cylinders are provided to the poor free of cost. However, many people have come out with allegations that money is collected from beneficiaries to provide gas connections in Kuliana block of Mayurbhanj district.
Locals have taken up the issue with the Kuliana BDO. They alleged that Ujjwala Sathis collected Rs 500 to Rs 1000 from each beneficiary when they are supposed to get gas free of cost.
The poor and uneducated people in rural areas are unaware of the guidelines of the central gas distribution scheme. In the complaint, they said a woman of Baiganabadia working as a Ujjwala Sathi has been indulging in such illegal activities.
All such activities have been reported from villages like Palasbani, Baunskantia, Baiganbadia and Kuchei.
It was learnt that Pana Soren, Sumi Soren and Gurubari Hembram have got gas connections under the scheme after paying Rs 600 each towards processing of booking applications and consumer books.
Gas distributors have engaged Ujjwala Sathis to visit houses and provide gas stoves, pipes and cylinders to beneficiaries.
“These Ujjwala Sathis have been warned against collecting money from beneficiaries, but they don’t refrain from such illegal act,” said Dillip Marandi, the owner of a gas agency.
Locals have said illegal collection of money from the poor has defeated the purpose of the Yojana. They have demanded a high level inquiry into alleged commissions being taken for LPG connections.