Fuel Lying Unused At This Time Of Scarcity

IMPHAL, Jan 18: Although the Government has cracked down seized unauthorized petrol and other petroleum products found hoarded from the fuel sharks, during drives conducted by various agencies, public distribution of the seized items is found to have been restricted without the permission of Ministry of Petroleum.

According to an official source, the Under Secretary of Consumer Affairs and Public Distribution had issued an order on July 17 last year directing the DCs, SPs, ADCs, Additional SPs, SDOs, DSOs and ADs concerned to launch a drive and seize illegal hoarding of petrol and other petroleum products.

Acting on the order of the Under Secretary, a Sub-Divisional Price Monitoring Committee had been constituted in respect of Lamphel Sub-Division of Imphal West district.

SDO, Lamphel is the Chairman of the Committee comprising five members and one member secretary.

The Committee is supposed to conduct market inspection to monitor the prices of essential commodities and stock position at least twice a week.

The Committee has the power to take the assistance of the nearest police station to effect seizure of essential commodities which are found hoarded illegally during the course of its inspection.

As per the power conferred upon it, the Committee had seized 11.3 kilolitre of diesel which were found hoarded illegally from the possession of one Ningombam Meghachandra of Kakwa Police Station Leirak in November last year.

For public distribution of the seized 11.3 kilolitre of diesel, the police have been entrusted to hand over the same to PCTC at Khoyathong. Accordingly, the police have taken the seized 11.3 kilolitre of diesel and unloaded the same at PCTC. However the diesel is still in the custody of PCTC without being distributed among the public, the official source informed.

In connection with the delay in public distribution of the seized 11.3 kilolitre in the custody of PCTC, an official of the IOC‘s Divisional Sales Office at Imphal explained that prior permission of the Ministry of Petroleum is essential before distribution of any seized petrol or petroleum products. Unloading the contents of the seized diesel at the tank of PCTC is also not permitted and it is against the norms. But it had been allowed on account of aggressive conduct of the police. The diesel being kept in the tank of PCTC has been properly sealed.

The official further informed that IOC has started the process for public distribution of the seized 11.3 kilolitres of diesel which is in the tank of PCTC. Since the diesel was being kept in an unauthorized manner, samples have also been sent at Guwahati for necessary testing to identity the parameters. The result of the test is awaited. Once the result is received, the same is to be again sent to the Ministry of Petroleum to distribute it to the public.

(Courtesy: The Sangai Express)

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