Lucknow: Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath started the distribution of free cooking gas connections under the Ujjwala 2.0 (Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana) on Wednesday.

Enabling households to cook using smoke-free fuels, the Uttar Pradesh government has set a target to provide 20 lakh free cooking gas connections to the poor families under Ujjwala 2.0.

The Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana under which women of below poverty line (BPL) families are being provided with clean cooking fuel was launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Ballia (Uttar Pradesh) on May 1, 2016.

Distributing free LPG connections through a virtual programme from his official residence in Lucknow, Yogi Adityanath also interacted with the beneficiaries from as many as 10 districts, including Banda, Chitrakoot, Hardoi, Amethi, Farrukhabad, Sonbhadra, Rae Bareli, Mahoba, Budaun and Fatehpur.

“There cannot be a better example of women empowerment than the Ujjwala scheme through which the Government has succeeded in ensuring a safe and healthy environment for women and children in poor households. Women are the ones who are responsible for feeding their families.

There were eight crore families in the country who did not have LPG connections. Women were forced to cook on wood and coal, which was hazardous for their eyes, lungs, and overall health. To help women get rid of this, Prime Minister Narendra Modi pursued the goal of 'Healthy Life, Better Life' through Ujjwala scheme.

This golden scheme has taken care of the health of our mothers and sisters by freeing them from smoke on the one hand and on the other, it has given relief from the trouble of arranging fuel, the struggle of finding dry wood during monsoon and rains and hours in the kitchen,” the chief minister told the beneficiaries during his interaction.    

The chief minister further said that before 2014, people used to queue up from midnight to get an LPG cylinder refilled in this country. 

“Sometimes, even after spending money people would not get a cylinder. Whether people were given cylinders or not, but if any person used to protest they had to face lathi-charge. There has been remarkable progress as people today are being provided free connections in the comfort of their homes,” he pointed out.

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