Govt plans relief for all categories of power consumers ahead of New Year

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BENGALURU: In what would be a major relief for citizens, the Energy Department is planning to bring down the power bills of consumers of all categories much ahead of the New Year.

The Energy Department plans to reduce the tariffs by 70 paise to Rs 2 per unit by reducing fuel costs. By doing so, it hopes to fend off public anger over the annual upward revision of power tariffs.

As per information available, all electricity supply companies (Escoms) have been directed to send a proposal to the Karnataka Electricity Regulatory Commission (KERC) after reducing the consumer tariffs. This will apply to domestic, HT, LT, industrial and commercial users too.

Also, since the cross-subsidy imposed on commercial users had become an irritant, leading to them leaving the grid, it has been decided to retain HT users by relaxing the cross-subsidy rules in Bescom jurisdiction and instead introduce an new fee system.

According to sources, it was also proposed to provide some relief to rural users. It is being contemplated to reduce tariffs by 25 paise per unit for consumers under gram panchayat limits. Also, it is proposed to reduce the tariff for LT 2 (A1) and LT 2 (A2) Lifeline consumers for up to 50 units from the Rs 4.15 and Rs 4.05 per unit to Rs.3.6 per unit.

For consumption of 50 to 200 units, it has been decided to merge the two slabs, it is being contemplated to charge Rs 5.4 per unit. This is expected to bring down the cost by Rs 2 per unit. For users of 200 units and beyond, it is proposed to consolidate the current rates of Rs 8.20 and Rs 7.70 to Rs 7 per unit.

Usage-based fee

A time-based fee system is also being considered for HT customers. For consumers who use power for 11 hours a day, the per unit charge of Rs 6.6 will be reduced by 75 paise.

“I have instructed the officials to take a pro-people stand during the revision of electricity charges. In this background, a lot of preparation is being done to facilitate the customers. By curbing unnecessary expenses and becoming consumer-friendly, the state government will become more popular. A reduction in user fees has been considered”, Energy Minister V Sunil Kumar said.

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