Electricity bills in Haryana and Punjab may rise

November 02, 2018 12:39 PM

Punjab News Express/Vinod Gupta
CHANDIGARH: The electricity bills may rise in Haryana and to some extent in Punjab  after the Supreme Court  allowed the  power companies Adani Power and  Tata Power   to approach the Central Electricity Regulatory Commission  for a tweak in contracts to allow them  to bill these states for higher cost of imported  coal. The financial burden of higher fuel prices  will be passed  to consumers.

Adani Power signed  long term power purchase agreement(PPA) of 25 years with Haryana for 1424 MW  in 2010 whereas Tata power has PPA with Punjab for 475 MW and with Haryana for 380 MW. The increase in electricity rates were  clearly defined in the agreement.

Haryana  is supposed to get 15803 million units in a year for 1804 MW  and for Punjab it will be 4161 million units for 475 MW.. In case  minimum  tariff of  3  paise per unit is allowed by CERC  it will be 4740 crore per annum for Haryana and for Punjab it will be 1248  crore per annum. The tariff revision will be done retrospectively for the power supplied by these companies and all the financial liabilities of states will be passed on to the consumers.

It may be mentioned that  Gujarat government had approached the Supreme Court for directions based on the report of an expert panel that suggested altering the power purchase agreements (PPAs). The committee in its  recommendations made earlier this month claimed that  the three power plants  4,000 MW Coastal Gujarat Power Limited of Tata Power, 4,620 MW at Mundra, Adani Power Mundra Limited and 1,200 MW Essar Power Gujarat Power Limited at Salaya would get a combined benefit of Rs 1.29 lakh crore in the next 30 years if the recommendations are implemented.

State Bank of India backed the proposal of Gujarat government in Supreme Court to tone down its stressed assets.SBI mentioned in its petition that banks have given 19127 crore to Adani,4214 crore to Essar and 10159 crore to Tata.

The Supreme Court had in April 2017 ruled out a tariff hike for the three imported coal based  projects as there was no such provision in PPAs and  after that  Gujarat Government set up a high powered panel for suggesting a bailout package with combined outstanding debt of Rs.22000 crore.

It may be mentioned that Energy watchdog  and Prayas , the original applicants in the 2017 case said that opening a special window for three projects will send a wrong signal and have cascading effect on all PPAs signed across the country based on tariff based bidding.

In most likeliness BJP ruled states may not oppose the tariff revision.

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