Ethanol-blended petrol move irks state dealers

SHILLONG, June 8: The Petroleum Dealers’ Association (PDA), Meghalaya, has opposed the decision of the Ministry of Petroleum to start adding ethanol in petrol.
“We had had opposed this move as even if there is slight water in the customers tank or in our underground storage tank it can create problem. But the government has been manufacturing this petrol and sending it to us,” PDA president, Kennedy C Khyriem, told reporters on Wednesday.
He said that nationwide awareness on ethanol-blended petrol was disseminated to make customers aware of its problems and how to deal with them. “As ethanol is hygroscopic in nature, it attracts water and reacts with it. This forms a new product, which can create problem in vehicles,” Khyriem said.
According to him, despite cleaning the storage tanks, there is a high chance of water entering their tanks as well as the customer’s vehicles’ tanks, especially two-wheelers, since Northeastern region receives plenty of rainfall.
“But it is a very sad affair that has been occurring in petrol pumps in Meghalaya, especially during the rainy season. When something like this happens, the petrol pump owners and the workers are being wrongly accused of purposely mixing water and selling it,” he said.
Khyriem said that videos are being made and circulated accusing petrol pump owners. “There have been several occasions when we have been forced to pay huge compensations. This is totally wrong. Recently, a similar problem in Nongspung, West Khasi Hills, and Laitkor BPCL pump, was reported on social media and elsewhere in a totally wrong way,” the PDA president said.
In view of these issues, he has beseeched the general public not to hold the petrol pump dealers accountable for problems arising due to ethanol blending.

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