People in all the dzongkhags in Bhutan are affected by the increase in the price of the Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) cylinder that is used as fuel to light the kitchen stoves.
The department trade, ministry of economic affairs (MoEA) has released a circular on July 1 noting that the prices of Kerosene fuel and LPG is likely to increase further because the Indian Government is thrifty on the issue.
The new rates of a refilled LPG cylinder will cost around Nu. 1,196 in Thimphu and Nu. 1,145 in Phuentsholing town, and moreover the prices is expected to rise by around Nu.612 to Nu.693 all over the country.
The people in Thimphu formed a long queue in Tashi Commercial gas depot and the BOD gas depot in Motithang to buy the LPG cylinders before the price hike yesterday. Such queues were also seen in the dzongkhags like Paro, Haa and Wangdue Phodrang. The depots sold out even the last emergency quota of gas cylinders.
Normally two trucks containing the LPG cylinders are transported in every dzongkhags, each truck containing of 231 cylinders and yesterday morning nearly 600 cylinders were distributed, and the depot was left with only 28 cylinders which made the place look like a fish market.
The regional director, trade department had to be called to ensure a fair distribution of the LPG cylinders among the people. A lucky dip was also prepared to ensure the fairness in distribution.
The regional director, trade department said, “The gas depot where we have kept some of our last emergency is also being issued for the general public.”
The general public shared the different thoughts on the increase of price of LPG cylinders.
A resident in the Thimphu Army camp, Phub Lham said, “It is so surprising why there’s been a sudden increase, and I still wonder how this issue will lead to again in the future because as of now, for almost two days, I had a difficult time coming in the depot again and again to get one cylinder.”
Another resident in Thimphu, Tshering Dema said, “As this is a serious issue for us, with the increase of the gas cylinders, but still then we have to bear it as this is a commodity needed to sustain us.”
Sonam Wangmo/ Thimphu