New levy im­posed, power to cost 12 paise more per unit

Hindustan Times (Patiala) - - Punjab - HT Cor­re­spon­dent n let­ter­schd@hin­dus­tan­times.com

Bur­den­ing the state’s con­sumers to the tune of ₹200 crore, the Pun­jab State Power Cor­po­ra­tion Limited (PSPCL) has im­posed an ad­di­tional 12 paise per unit levy in the form of Fuel Cost Ad­just­ment (FCA) on con­sump­tion.

The de­ci­sion was taken on Oc­to­ber 11 (Thurs­day) and the FCA would be col­lected from con­sumers even for the pe­riod from April 1 to June 30, with ef­fect from Oc­to­ber 1 to De­cem­ber 31. The state govern­ment’s power sub­sidy bill will also in­crease by ₹40 crore.

The FCA is levied based on the changes in vari­able cost de­pen­dent on the cost of pro­duc­tion of power. Coal prices, freight, taxes and other op­er­a­tional costs go into this cal­cu­la­tion.

In July, the PSPCL, on a di­rec­tive from the reg­u­la­tor, the Pun­jab State Elec­tric­ity Reg­u­la­tory Com­mis­sion (PSERC), had hiked power price by 8 paise per unit to claim ₹146 crore from con­sumers as FCA.

The power reg­u­la­tor has also al­lowed the PSPCL to im­pose an ad­di­tional sur­charge of ₹0.86 per KWh from Open Ac­cess con­sumers for Oc­to­ber 1, 2018 to March 31, 2019, pro­vided its con­tracted ca­pac­ity re­mains stranded dur­ing the pe­riod.

Dur­ing this pe­riod, power is avail­able at cheaper rates in the grid. Some large con­sumers then buy it from there through Open Ac­cess.

This ul­ti­mately means that the the power gen­er­a­tion ca­pac­ity of the PSPCL re­mains un­used.

The PSPCL had an­tic­i­pated this sit­u­a­tion and said that with avail­able gen­er­at­ing ca­pac­i­ties likely to re­main stranded dur­ing this pe­riod, it is forced to pay fixed cost to pri­vate power plants in Pun­jab.

So, it had ap­proached the the PSERC to levy this spe­cial sur­charge on in­dus­try.

AAP, SAD SLAM HIKE

CHANDI­GARH The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has con­demned the hike in elec­tric­ity tar­iff by the PSPCL say­ing it was “un­war­ranted and un­ac­cept­able”. Leader of op­po­si­tion Harpal Singh Cheema said the in­crease would bur­den do­mes­tic, in­dus­trial and farm­ing power con­sumers.

The Shi­ro­mani Akali Dal (SAD) has also con­demned the hike in power tar­iff and ac­cused the Congress govern­ment of in­creas­ing rates through the back door. It also claimed that the rates had been in­creased 20% since the Congress had come to power.

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