Pb CM assures of Industrial power at Rs.5/unit despite 2-part Tarriff announced by PSERC
Chandigarh: Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh has assured that his government will provide power at Rs 5 per unit to industry, as approved by the state cabinet, notwithstanding the two-part tariff announced today by the Punjab State Electricity Regulatory Commission (PSERC). The Chief Minister has directed the Power Secretary and Chairman of Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL) to examine the implications of the two-part tariff and issue an advisory to the concerned department to freeze industrial power tariff at Rs. 5/unit from Nov 1, as already approved by the state cabinet.The Chief Minister reiterated his commitment to provide tariff for the industry at Rs 5 per unit for five years under the “Industrial and Business Development Policy 2017” notified on October 17, and said his government will work to ensure that it meets its promise in this regard. With this assurance, the Chief Minister has laid to rest all apprehensions of the government reneging on its promise of freezing of industrial power tariff at Rs 5/unit for the next five years. While it was the prerogative of the Commission to fix power tariff in all categories under the provisions of the Electricity Act, 2003, the government will ensure that it meets its commitment to power users in the state, the Chief Minister said in the wake of the notification of the PSERC Tariff Order for the year 2017-18.He promised that his government would provide the necessary subsidy to PSPCL accordingly, to meet its commitments for providing free/affordable power to various categories of consumers including agriculture, industry, scheduled castes, backward classes and below poverty-line domestic consumers. The government will ensure that power is provided to small consumers at part with the existing tariff of Rs.4.99 per KWH – a move that will benefit 85,000 small industrial consumers, while keeping the overall tariff to Rs. 5.00 per unit in the new scenario of a two-part tariff, for industrial consumers in the medium and large category, said Captain Amarinder.Reiterating his government’s commitment to provide quality power on 24 x 7 basis to all the domestic, commercial and industrial consumers in the state, the Chief Minister further said free power to agriculture consumers would continue, as would up to 200 units per month to Scheduled Caste (SC), Backward Class (BC) & Non-SC BPL domestic consumers, and up to 300 units per month to Freedom Fighter Domestic Consumers. On the hike announced by PSERC in domestic tariff, the Chief Minister said the nominal increase was necessitated by the increasing cost of power generation and distribution and pointed out that the domestic power tariff had been static for the past three years. He further noted that despite the hike, the domestic power rate in Punjab continues to be lower than all neighbouring states, except Himachal Pradesh.
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