By our Staff Reporter
GUWAHATI, Dec 4: Assam Minister of State for Power Pallav Lochon Das’ statement made before the press today has made it crystal clear that – fuel and power purchase price adjustment – which led the department to hike power tariff by 59 paise per unit could be solved to a large extent had the department got the amount which the government and its various departments owe it.
When asked by reporters on the issue of steep hike in power tariff in the State at Assam Secretariat today, the minister said: “The 59 paise per unit power tariff hike was a proposal pending since September 2015. However, at that time the government asked the APCDL not to hike power tariff on the ground that it would extend power subsidy to the department.”
When asked as to how much the department is to get from the State Government, Das said: “The department is to get Rs 150 crore from the government as subsidy. This apart, during the previous government the ASEB did various TDF construction works for which it has to get as much as Rs 400 crore. The department is to get another Rs 30 crore from the government as emergency services. Apart from all these, various departments of the government have not cleared their power bills as yet. The amount which the department is to get in the form of power bills from various State Government departments is yet to be computed. The amount will be several crores.”
Das reiterated that the power tariff hike has been necessitated due to ‘fuel and power purchase price adjustment’. “The APDCL spends Rs 265 crore extra for purchasing power from different power grids,” he said.
Das said it is necessary to hike power tariff to cover losses being faced by the department due to increased production cost.
According to Das, Assam needs 1,250 MW to 1,500 MW of power supply in peak hours against the domestic production of 250 MW.