Monthly minimum charges on power consumers waived off, tariff reduced to Rs.6.37 per unit: APERC
| Thursday | 1st April, 2021
ERC chairman said that the decision to waive off the monthly fixed charges has been taken to provide relief to consumers. He said that the fixed monthly charges will be replaced with a nominal Rs.10 per kilo watt charge. The new tariff will come into force from April, 1, 2021.
Andhra Pradesh Electricity Regulation Commission (APERC) has waived off monthly minimum charges on domestic power consumers in the state. Function halls and convention centres have also been exempted from paying monthly minimum charges. The commission had also reduced the average tariff to Rs.6.37 per unit from Rs.7.17 per unit in the past. APERC chairman Justice CV Nagarjuna Reddy released the new tariff for 2021-22 at a media conference on Wednesday.
ERC chairman said that the decision to waive off the monthly fixed charges has been taken to provide relief to consumers. He said that the fixed monthly charges will be replaced with a nominal Rs.10 per kilo watt charge. The new tariff will come into force from April, 1, 2021. He said that implementation of separate tariff for the solar and wind power plants instead of the prices fixed in the Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs) has also helped reduction of the average tariff to the consumers.
Justice Nagarjuna Reddy said that they have conducted public hearings in virtual mode due to the Covid-19 and took the objections and suggestions of the public into consideration before fixation of the tariff. He said that three discoms have filed their returns with the ERC seeking revision of tariff on several categories. All the three discoms put together showed a deficit of Rs.12549 crore during the current fiscal and projected the deficit at Rs.11,741.18 crore after revision of tariff. However, ERC put the deficit at Rs.7433.80 crore by effectively helping the consumers and government of facing a burden of Rs.4307.38 crore
He, however, said that the ERC had conducted a scientific study on the filings of the discoms and objections received from the public before arriving at the new tariff.
“We have turned down the request of the distribution companies to change the categories of aqua and poultry sectors to bring them into industrial category. They will continue to be treated as agriculture sector,” said ERC chairman.
AP poultry federation has requested APERC not to accept the proposals filed by the discoms to bring them into industries category. The poultry federation said that about six lakh people were getting employment from the sector and revision of tariff would hit the entire segment with additional burden. They explained that the tariff would go up to Rs.6.70-Rs.7.30 per unit from the existing Rs.4.50 per unit if it was changed to Industry category III(A) from the agriculture related category V-C (i).
Interestingly, the discoms have strongly contended that the activities in poultry sector and feed mixing plants would come under industry nature of work and they needed to be brought under new segment.
APERC had however turned down the discoms demand and provided big relief to the aqua and poultry sector. ERC chairman Justice Reddy said that the state government has agreed to shoulder a burden of Rs.7297 crore to provide free power to the agriculture sector. APERC had allowed the state government’s proposal to continue free power to artisans including barber saloons, dhobi ghats, handloom weavers, goldsmiths at a cost of Rs.1657 crore.
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