By Our Correspondent
NEW DELHI:Minister of State (I/C) for Petroleum and Natural Gas, Dharmendra Pradhan reviewed the existing policy concerning allotment of Retail Outlets to candidates belonging to Scheduled Caste/Scheduled Tribe communities.
The Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs)IOCL, BPCL and HPCL have a laid-down policy for promoting social inclusion and economic empowerment of the weaker sections of the society. As part of the strategy, the OMCs allocate 22.5% of the new Retail Outlets in favour of candidates belonging to Scheduled Caste/Scheduled Tribe communities.
Apart from such regular allotments, the OMCs also have a well laid-down framework for allotting existing Retail Outlets to candidates belonging to Scheduled Caste/Scheduled Tribe communities. It is done through divestment of company owned temporary Retail Outlets.
It was observed that there was a huge shortfall with respect to meeting the social commitments of the OMCs. In accordance with the directives issued, the OMCs have initiated a concerted effort on procuring land from various State governments. The land obtained from State governments will be exclusively used for facilitating establishment of Retail Outlets by the SC/ST candidates.
Pradhan has also directed the OMCs to expedite selection process of SC/ST locations advertised in 2014 -15. For SC/ST applicants, additional time has been allowed to the applicants to submit land to the OMCs for consideration of their applications for RO.
It was also observed that there was a large number of Letter of Intent (LoI) holders who were awaiting allotment of Retail Outlets which is primarily done by divesting the temporary company owned Retail Outlets. The LoI holders since 2004, belonging to SC/ST community were also awaiting such allotment. A special drive has been initiated to expedite the process of handing over Retail Outlets to such candidates.
As part of this initiative/special drive, approximately 600 such Retail Outlets have been identified across the country. The process of allotment has been initiated in a transparent manner by putting in the public domain the details of LoI holders as well as the details of the Retail Outlets which are to be divested. The process is likely to be completed by 31.03.2017. It is likely to benefit more than 500 SC/ST candidates, widows and unmarried women (above 40 years) without earning parents. This will provide necessary employment opportunity along with economic empowerment.