In what looks like a double whammy for Delhiites, the Delhi Electricity Power Regulatory Commission on Friday evening approved a proposal by the power distribution companies to levy up to 8 per cent fuel surcharge, a move that is likely to partly nullify the reduction in power bills announced with much fanfare by the Aam Aadmi Party government barely a month ago.
The hike comes even as power outage of up to 10 hours at a stretch stares in the face of consumers of East and Central Delhi. The The BSES Yamuna Power Limited (BYPL) has threatened to resort to load-shedding as the NTPC refused to sell power to the discom from Saturday due to non clearance of dues.
TheBYPL, the BSES Rajdhani Power Limited (BRPL) and the North Delhi Power Limited (NDPL) have increased surcharge by 8, 6 and 7 per cent respectively.
Meanwhile the Delhi government reacted quite strongly to the power tariff hike and condemned the move.
Terming it as a move “uncalled for” as the CAG audit into the accounts of private distribution companies was already under progress.
The government said the DERC should have waited for the outcome of CAG audit before putting burden on the people at a time when lot of questions are being raised on the functioning of these power distribution companies.
Kejriwal reacts strongly
The strong reaction by the government came after Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal criticised the discom for “blackmailing” the government.
Mr. Kejriwal — who has accused the three discoms of fudging their accounts to show losses — warned that their licenses could be cancelled.
He said that his Cabinet would take a fresh call on the power rates after the national auditor completes its inspection of the private firms’ accounts.