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Government considering raising cap on subsidised LPG cylinders

Moily told the Lok Sabha that the government is considering giving more than six subsidised LPG cylinders and need a few days time

New Delhi: The Union Government is considering raising cap on supply of subsidised LPG cylinders and a decision will be taken in the 'next few days', Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister M Veerappa Moily said in the Lok Sabha on Friday, reports PTI.
"We are considering it (giving more than six subsidised cylinders) and need a few days time," he said during Question Hour.
"We are applying our mind on this issue," he said after Opposition members cornered the government on the LPG cap and demanded that the decision be rolled back as it affected the common man who is already burdened by price rise.
Moily said he will discuss with the Finance Minister and the Prime Minister as to what the government could do.
He said the government knew the hardships faced by women and it has received several representations from the people and MPs on it.
His response came on a supplementary raised by Leader of the Opposition Sushma Swaraj who said this was for the first time that a government has rationed LPG cylinders to only six per family per year. Families which need more than six cylinders will have to shell out Rs900 per cylinder, he said.
"This is such an inappropriate decision. The government has taken this decision even as prices are skyrocketing. Will you take back this decision and stop rationing cylinders?" she asked.
Moily said over Rs1.64 lakh crore subsidies is being paid by the government at present. "We do not have a surplus of LPG. 75% of the world's LPG is consumed by India. In other countries both electricity and gas is used," he said.
This did not satisfy the BJP members who were on their feet to press for their demand for rolling back the cap. They shouted "Remove the LPG cap", "Stop LPG politics", while TMC members walked into the Well and demanded that the subsidy be increased.
Moily said even after the capping of LPG cylinders the subsidy burden on it is Rs36,000 crore.


Economic growth declines to 5.3% in July-September quarter

The economic growth in the first six months of FY13 is 5.4%, lower than 7.3% growth registered in same period a year ago

New Delhi: The Indian economy grew by 5.3% during July-September the current financial year (2012-13), pulled down by poor performance of manufacturing and agriculture sectors thus showing persistent signs of slowdown, reports PTI.


The gross domestic product (GDP) had expanded by 6.7% in the same period of last fiscal. It had grown by 5.5% in the first quarter (April-June) of 2012-13.


During the three-month period ended 30th September, the manufacturing sector grew marginally by 0.8%, against 2.9% growth in the same period of 2011-12, according to data released by the Central Statistical Organisation (CSO) on Friday.


Farm sector output expanded by just 1.2% in the July-September period this fiscal against 3.1% in the same period last year.


Mining and quarrying sector, however, showed some improvement and recorded a growth of 1.9% during the quarter, as against a contraction of 5.4% in the second quarter of 2011-12.


The economic growth in the first six month of this fiscal (April-September) is 5.4%, lower than 7.3% growth clocked in the year-ago period.


In the July-September quarter, trade, hotels, transport and communications segment also witnessed lower pace of growth at 5.5% compared to 9.5% expansion in the same quarter in year ago.


The growth rate of electricity, gas and water supply also dipped to 3.4% in the second quarter, from 9.8% witnessed in the same quarter of 2011-12.


Construction sector expanded by 6.7% Q2 of 2012-13, as against 6.3% in the year-ago period.


Growth rate of services sector, including insurance and real estate, stood at 9.4% in the second quarter, against 9.9% recorded in same quarter last fiscal.


Finance Minister P Chidambaram had earlier said that the economy faces a "difficult situation" and the way to overcome this difficult situation is through innovation and increasing the production of goods and services.


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