Discrimination in Kerosene (Cooking Fuel) Allocation - India and Tamil Nadu Government

V. P. Govindarajan

TAMIL TRIBUNE, December 2012 (ID. 2012-12-02)
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Tamil Nadu State Food Minister S. Kamaraj said on April 16, 2012 that the Indian Central Government has been betraying Tamil Nadu government in the allocation of kerosene. He said that Government of India was supplying 59,780 kilolitres of kerosene per month till March 2010, reduced it to 52,806 kilolitres per month from April 2010 to May 2010 [that is a 11.6 % reduction], and reduced it further to 44,572 kilolitres per month between June 2011 and March 2012 [that is a 25.4% reduction from the March 2010 allocation]. Chief Minister Jayalalithaa wrote to the Prime Minister requesting him to increase the kerosene allocation. Did the prime minister increase the kerosene allocation? No. Instead the allocation was even further reduced to 39,429 kilolitres for April 2012 [that is a 34.0% reduction from the March 2010 allocation], which, according to the minister, could fulfill only 60.53 per cent of Tamil Nadu's requirement.

Chief Minister Jayalalithaa wrote to Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh again on May 25, 2012. She said that the poor in rural and urban areas depend on kerosene supplied through the Public Distribution System (PDS), and that the repeated reduction in kerosene allocation is without any reason or logic. She called it "a callous approach".

Because of Indian government actions, Tamilnadu is short in electric supply, water supply and infrastructures too. See the articles listed in Reference 1. People of Tamil Nadu should be able to make decisions on essential supplies and industrial development without having to get approval from the Indian government. Tamil Nadu should be able to buy kerosene directly from the market without having to beg and plead to India. We are willing to pay market price for it. Why should we have to beg for it?

NOTE: Kerosene is used in Tamil Nadu as cooking fuel. Thousands and thousands of families depend on it.


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