Hyderabad, February 16
The State government is planning to give a subsidy of about Rs 5,000 crores to Telangana power Discom. The discoms have not yet submitted this year’s power tariff proposals to TS Electricity Regulatory Commission (TSERC), which should normally be submitted before January 18. In fact these proposals should be submitted before December last year to TSERC.
Due to its late decision over joining Ujwal Discom Assurance Yojana (UDAY) of the Central government, the Telangana government has to bear the losses of Discoms.
The Discoms can come out of its losses and revenue deficit of about Rs 6,000 crores for the 2017-18 only by increasing the power tariff. But the power department officials said that KCR is unwilling to increase the tariff.
The Discoms were relieved of Rs 890 crores of financial burden as it joined UDAY. The Chief Minister is reportedly focused on alternate means without increasing power tariff in 2017-18 and 2018-19. Even if they have to increase the tariff, it will be minimum only, the officials assured.
The government gave Rs 4,584 crore subsidy to Discoms during 2016-17. If the subsidy for 2017-18 is increased to Rs 5,000 crore, then power tariff cannot be increased more than 3 per cent.
There are about 1.32 lakh power consumers in the State. The government is afraid of public opposition if they increase tariff by 15 to 20 per cent. Besides, this will become a suitable weapon for Opposition to strike the government. Power charges have to be increased about Rs 2,000 crores if the Discoms proposals are accepted. Hence KCR is thinking twice on power tariff hike.