New Delhi, Oct. 2: Consumers can now switch to cooking gas (LPG) dealers of another oil company in an area.
“Under the portability scheme, a consumer can opt for the distributor of his choice within a cluster of distributors in the vicinity and across oil companies,” the oil ministry said.
This means an Indane customer can switch to a connection with HP Gas or Bharat Gas, and vice-versa.
There will be a pool of three to four dealers in a cluster, and consumers have to choose from them.
Starting with 30 cities in the first phase, the service will be extended depending on the success of the scheme.
In the east, portability will be available in Patna, Jamshedpur, Ranchi, Bhubaneswar and Calcutta.
At present, consumers are attached to a distributor, which they cannot change even if they are not satisfied with the service of the dealer or the oil marketing company.
Further, consumers will be able to see the service ratings of all the distributors in a given cluster and choose the one they want.
At present, each distributor is being rated from 5-star to no-star, using transaction data.
The distributor supplying 85 per cent of the cylinders booked in less than two days is rated 5-star, while the dealer providing 85 per cent of the cylinders after 10 days gets a no-star.
Customers can view the delivery pattern of their distributors and compare it with the others.
To make it easier for consumers, the option can be registered electronically on the website of the oil marketing companies. Electronic tracking of the portability request and closure is in place to ensure that consumers do not have any difficulty in moving to a distributor of their choice.
Available at petrol pumps
Small LPG cylinders weighing 5kg will be sold at select petrol pumps in metro cities from October 5. They will be priced at market rate. The cylinders will be available at company owned and operated pumps, which make up for just 3 per cent of the over 47,000 pumps in the country.