Union Government and Punjab Government will sign an MOU to set up projectsin the state to produce ethanol fuel from crop stubble. The first such project would be set up at Bathinda at a cost of Rs. 500 crore and its foundation stone to be laid after two weeks. After launching the Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana here today, the Deputy Chief Minister S. Sukhbir Singh Badal and Union Minister for Petrolium and Natural Gas Mr. Dharmendra Pardhan said these ethanol units would reduce the dependence for fuel requirement from the Arabian countries and Central Asian countries. Union Minister informed that Punjab produces more than 50 lakh ton crop stubble in a season, which would be used as a raw material for the fuel units. He also announced that in first phase 10 ethanol units would be set up in various districts in Punjab which would play an important role to redress the issue of pollution.
Meanwhile interacting with media persons, the Deputy Chief Minister said these fuel projects would be a big push for the economy of the state as the farmers of Punjab would get an additional income of Rs. 4000 crore from crop stubble.Deputy Chief Minister informed that under this scheme, LPG connections and steel chullas would be provided to all 7 lakh BPL households who have no domestic gas connections in Punjab. He also said that out of total 65 lakh households in the state, about 7 lakh were using kerosene and other traditional methods for cooking etc, adding he said this scheme would provide smoke free kitchen to the women in the each household.
In his address Union Minister for state, Mr. Vijay Sampla said that providing LPG connections to BPL households will ensure universal coverage of cooking gas in the country. The scheme of providing clean cooking fuel will also reduce pollution and the time spent on cooking and will also provide employment for rural youth in the supply chain of cooking gas. As a symbolic launch of the scheme, 10 women from BPL families were handed over connections and chullas by Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal, MOS Mr. Dharmendra Pradhan along with MoS, Shri Vijay Sampla.Prominent amongst present on the occasion included Former Punjab President Kamal Sharma, Vice president of BJP Mr. Rakesh Rathore, BJP MLA Manoranjan Kalia, K.D.Bhandari, Mayor Sunil Jyoti, Divisional Commissioner H.S.Nanda and Deputy Commissioner K.K.Yadav, Special Principal secretary to Deputy Chief Minister Manvesh Singh Sidhu, Police Commissioner Arpit Shukla .