Power tariff hike inevitable: Sheila Dikshit (Lead)

July 2nd, 2012 - 7:51 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, July 2 (IANS) The Delhi government said Monday it would continue to provide a subsidy on power consumption up to 200 units with the Chief Minister again justifying the hiked electricity tarrif, terming it “inevitable”.

“The cabinet today decided to continue to give subsidy on the consumption of up to 200 power units. Instead of paying 3.70 paise the consumers will pay 2.70 paise per unit,” Dikshit told reporters after the cabinet meeting Monday.

Dikshit claimed the move will benefit nine million power consumers in the capital and the government will have to incur the annual loss of Rs.222 crore.

“The decision to revise power tariff was entirely of the DERC and to ensure the required supply of electricity in the capital, it was necessary,” Dikshit said.

The subsidy will not be applicable to those consumers whose power consumption will cross 200 units.

Justifying the rise in power prices, Dikshit cited the power scenario of neighbouring cities (Noida, Gurgaon, Ghaziabad) where electricity charges are much higher than that of Delhi.

When asked why the hike in percentage was higher than the hike the discoms had sought, Dikshit said, “Why don’t you ask DERC as we did not make this decision.”

While North Delhi Power Ltd. sought an 18 percent hike in tariff, BSES Rajdhani, which supplies power to south and west areas, wanted a hike of 20 percent, and BSES Yamuna, serving the east Delhi areas, asked for a 27 percent increase in tariff.

Earlier June 26, the DERC had announced a hike in the tarrif by 24.1 percent for domestic consumers including eight percent surcharge.

This was the fourth hike in domestic electricity rates in the past 10 months. In August 2011, it was hiked by 21.77 percent.

Resident welfare associations (RWAs) opposed the fresh move by the DERC and demanded the resignation of the chief minister for allegedly protecting the interests of the discoms.

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