Stan­dard For­mula for Power Data to End Ma­nip­u­la­tion

The Economic Times - - Economy: Macro, Micro & More - Sarita.Singh@ times­group.com

New Delhi: The govern­ment will soon stan­dard­ise ways to fool­proof the power sec­tor of data ma­nip­u­la­tion by states.

Come April and all states will cal­cu­late com­mer­cial losses — gap be­tween cost and rev­enue on a stan­dard­ised for­mula — while the data on the power sup­ply po­si­tion and billing ef­fi­ciency will be sourced di­rectly from elec­tric­ity feed­ers with­out man­ual in­ter­ven­tion. This will limit the scope of data ma­nip­u­la­tion by states.

Ex­perts say such mea­sures will help bring trans­parency to the power sec­tor that grap­ples with mis­trust on data pro­vided by states. At present, state dis­tri­bu­tion com­pa­nies cal­cu­late the gap be­tween their av­er­age cost of sup­ply and av­er­age rev­enue re­al­i­sa­tion based on their own for­mu­lae.

A se­nior govern­ment of­fi­cial said states do not fol­low stan­dard pro­ce­dures in cal­cu­la­tion of losses. While some states cal­cu­late losses on the ba­sis of en­ergy fed into the sys­tem, some do it on the ba­sis of en­ergy sold to con­sumers. Some states take sub­si­dies into ac­count while cal­cu­lat­ing sub­si­dies while oth­ers do not. “We have pre­pared a stan­dard for­mula for cal­cu­la­tion of losses. The re­port has been sent to the Cen­tral Elec­tric­ity Author­ity (CEA), which will com­mu­ni­cate it to states,” the of­fi­cial said.

Cur­rently, CEA col­lates data from states and drafts pe­ri­odic re­ports. But there have been sev­eral in­stances of a state pre­sent­ing dif­fer­ent data to the CEA, elec­tric­ity reg­u­la­tors and other fo­rums. The power min­istry is bound to ac­cept the data given the coun­try’s fed­eral struc­ture.

The power min­istry will next month also launch a web por­tal called Na­tional Power Por­tal and a mo­bile ap­pli­ca­tion con­nect­ing all 110,000 elec­tric­ity feed­ers — equip­ment that links con­sumers to sub­sta­tions — in the coun­try. The min­istry has al­ready con­nected and made 25,000 ur­ban feed­ers live for en­ergy au­dit­ing.

“As data is com­pletely au­toma- ted, we’ll be able to con­duct au­dits and as­cer­tain the hours of en­ergy sup­ply and level of com­mer­cial and tech­ni­cal losses at feeder level in each state,” said the of­fi­cial.

There have been in­stances of states fudg­ing data to show zero power deficit, es­pe­cially dur­ing elec­tions. The of­fi­cial said once the na­tional power por­tal and stan­dard­ised for­mula are put in place, data col­lected from states on per­for­mance of the dis­com debt re­struc­tur­ing scheme, Ujwal Dis­com As­sur­ance Yo­jna (UDAY), can be also be ver­i­fied.

Data shared by states show that states like Jhark­hand, Goa, Gu­jarat and Puducherry have been able to re­duce tech­ni­cal losses. Andhra Pradesh, Goa, Ra­jasthan and Ch­hat­tis­garh have also sig­nif­i­cantly re­duced the gap be­tween rev­enue and cost. Be­sides measu- res like curb­ing thefts, en­ergy con­ser­va­tion and reg­u­lar tar­iff pe­ti­tions, power dis­tri­bu­tion com­pa­nies are in­tro­duc­ing in­no­va­tive schemes to re­duce losses.

Power dis­tri­bu­tion com­pa­nies of Bi­har have im­ple­mented a billing soft­ware and started spot billing through mo­bile ap­pli­ca­tion. The Haryana govern­ment has an­nounced Mhara Gaon-Jag­mag Gaon scheme to pro­vide 24-hour power sup­ply in ru­ral ar­eas. If the vil­lage pays bills to the ex­tent of 90%, the elec­tric­ity sup­ply to the vil­lage is in­creased from 18 to 21 hours. In Bithur vil­lage in Ra­jasthan, women have been en­gaged to curb trans­mis­sion and dis­tri­bu­tion losses. Ma­nipur has taken up in­stal­la­tion of pre­paid me­ters to re­duce out­stand­ing debts, en­ergy theft and im­prove billing ef­fi­ciency.

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