Even as the Karnataka Electricity Regulatory Commission (KERC) mulls on the proposal to raise electricity tariff in the State, several industries and business have requested subsidised rates to ensure competitiveness in the market.

The requests and objections to Mescom’s (Mangalore Electricity Supply Company) proposal of a 66 paise across the board hike were heard during a recent meeting with KERC chairperson M.R. Sreenivasa Murthy here.

Karnataka Small Scale Industries Association (KASSIA), that represents around 5,000 industries in the State, has said the present rate of Rs. 6.04 per unit for industries was much above the rates of Maharasthra (Rs. 4.80 per unit) and Rajasthan (Rs. 4.01), rendering the products here uncompetitive. “Moreover, industries are subjected to load shedding, unscheduled interruption. Many foundries, forging shops, heat treatment shops, steel mills are facing closure,” said K. Jairaj Pai, Chairman of Mofussil Development Committee, KASSIA.

This was iterated the previous year by ice factories in the district.

Kanara Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) has similarly asked for service industries – such as private automobile workshops – be classified under LT-5 (Rs. 4.25 per unit) from the current HT-2 rate of around Rs. 6.75 per unit.

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