Power dearer by 3.8% in Karnataka, average hike of 30 paise/unit

The delay in announcement is because of the election code of conduct and the pandemic. 
For representational purposes
For representational purposes

BENGALURU: A household in Bengaluru, falling under Bescom limits, that consumed around 220 units of electricity and paid a monthly bill of Rs 1,794, will have to pay an additional Rs 39 (2.3 per cent increase) from next month. Reason: The Karnataka Electricity Regulatory Commission has revised the power tariff.In a virtual meeting with all stakeholders on Wednesday, KERC Chairman Shambhu Dayal Meena announced an average increase of 30 paise per unit, which translates to an average increase of 3.84 per cent. The revised tariff comes into effect from April 1. The delay in announcement is because of the election code of conduct and the pandemic. 

KERC has also revised the first slab (known as lifeline consumption slab) from existing 0-30 units to 0-50 units, and 50-70 units to 50- 100 units. A KERC official said, “We have brought in changes as energy generation in the State is very high, but the economy is poor. Since the immediate sale of power is not possible as the market is yet to open up, the commission wanted to increase the tariff.” The order said, “The increase in energy charges is 10 paise per unit and the increase in fixed charge cost ranges from Rs 10 to Rs 20, except for Bengaluru Metro and battery- operated vehicles. The existing concessional tariff of Rs 5 per unit for electric vehicles will continue.”

A Bescom official said, “Since the order comes into effect from April 1, the balance due for April and May will be collected in October and November without charging any rate of interest. We had demanded an increase of Rs 1.39 per unit. But the Commission has allowed us to recover Rs 856 crore in 12 months. That is the reason, the tariff is being calculated slab wise.” M G Prabhakar, an energy expert from FKCCI, said, “I am happy the incentive scheme continues. Also instead of selling power on orders, it will be given to industries at Rs 6 flat. But the worry is industrial consumption will not increase till December because of Covid and labour issues, so how much power can industries use now as its already June? I am glad that the commission has recognised the gaps in these sectors and the need to supply to industries.”

Energy Secretary G Kumar Naik said that the revision is a signal to industries that the power situation in Karnataka is good and they should set up units here. The message is also that the government is doing all it can in this time to bounce back. Industries have also shown an increase and the incentive consumption is above that of last year.

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