More than a month after the Delhi Government sought “statutory advice” from the Delhi Electricity Regulatory Commission about the concerns expressed by the discoms in their representation to the Government, the advice has not yet been provided.
According to Power Department sources, the DERC is yet to analyse the data that the discoms have submitted, following queries made by the Commission.
“It seems unlikely that the statutory advice will be submitted anytime soon. The DERC is yet to work out the exact details of the data that the discoms have furnished. The concerns that were raised by the discoms and placed before the Delhi Government were dismissed by the DERC on various grounds, and had insisted that the discoms have been making profit. This was contested by the discoms,” said an official.
The discoms had sent detailed rebuttal to the DERC claims that the companies have withheld information and not given an accurate summary of their financial position. “The discoms disputed the claims made by the DERC. They have maintained that their financial position is bad and that they have been unable to meet their commitments vis-à-vis power purchase. They also appended details of their account and said the DERC had made several omission while calculating the balance sheets. The DERC is yet to analyse these details, therefore, unable to draft the statutory advice that the Government has sought,” the official said.
Sources in the Power Department said there are “indications” that the statutory advice will be delayed as far October. “There are indications that it might not be submitted before October and unless the advice is given, the DERC will not even be able to announce the new tariff,” said an official.
Referring to the discoms petitions for the true-up of charges filed in 2009-10 and for power purchase adjustment, the official said: “Even the Appellate Tribunal for Electricity has stated in a BRPL versus DERC case that in trying to keep the power tariff low for the present, the DERC should ensure that the consumers do not get burdened with interest that will have to be borne in the future,” the official said.
He went on to add: “The Appellate had said while it appreciates that the Commission intends to keep the burden on the consumer as low as possible. At the same time one has to remember that the burden of the consumer is not ultimately reduced by under estimating the cost today and truing it up in future as such method also burdens the consumer with carrying cost.”