Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Dec 12:
Power tariff in Odisha is set to rise in the 201516 fiscal, if the proposal submitted to the Odisha Electricity Regulatory Commission (OERC) by distribution companies (discos), bulk power supplier GRIDCO, and Odisha Hydro Electricity Corporation (OHPC) is anything to go by.
However, the companies neither promise uninterrupted power supply to consumers, nor have they been able to meet the target set by OERC to reduce their losses. The agencies clearly want to put the burden of their failure on the shoulder of consumers.
As per the proposal, the distribution companies have recommended an increase in tariff by 70 paisa to Rs 1.12 paisa per unit. GRIDCO has also suggested increasing the buying price of electricity up to 90 paisa.
The companies claim that they have incurred huge losse since electricity tarfff was not hiked for year 2014-15 in view of the simultanoeus Assembly and Parliament elections earlier this year. GRIDCO maintains that it needs Rs. 9281.74 crores to supply 26156 million units of electricity for year 2015-16. To turn things around, it says it would need the price to be set at Rs 3.54 per unit.
Central Electricity Supply Utility of Odisha (CESU) has proposed a new rate of Rs 3 per unit up to 50 units, Rs 4.70 per unit between 50-200 units, Rs 5.30 per unit between 200-400 units and Rs 5.60 beyond 400 units. While other distribution companies of Odisha such as NESCO, SOUTHCO and WESCO haven’t recommended a specific tariff plan, they are all in favour of a hike.
At present, the consumers are paying Rs 2.30 per unit up for the first 50 units, Rs 3.15 per unit for the next 100 units, Rs 3.58 per unit up to 200 units, Rs 4.05 per unit up to 300 units, Rs4.51 per unit up to 500 units, Rs 4.68 per unit up to 600 units.
“The financial health of the companies will be severely affected if the prices are not revised as per recommendation. The government or the OERC should compensate our losses should it want the prices to remain the same,” said a senior executive of CESU.
The companies, however, have failed miserably in implementing the reforms recommended by OERC for year 2014-15 such as smart monitoring scheme, energy edit, SCADA project and have not been able to achieve the target to keep their losses limited at 21.38 percent.