The State is headed for severe power crisis in the next two months, with the power utility companies running short of assured supply.
Significantly, this gloomy forecast was reportedly disclosed by Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy while responding to queries from Congress leaders at an in-camera meeting to discuss preparations for the regional convention in Vijayawada on January 7.
He also expressed helplessness in bringing down the Fuel Surcharge Adjustment (FSA) on power supply saying it was based on Court directions. “Consumers will have to bear with it for another one year. We have already referred the issue to the Cabinet sub-committee for advice,” he reportedly observed.
Mr. Reddy, it is understood, was forced to give an insight into the prevailing power situation in the State after leaders from Krishna, Guntur and West Godavari districts expressed their resentment at the levy of a hefty FSA on the common man.
These issues are believed to have dominated the meeting essentially convened to carry forward the ‘spirit’ of the State-level convention held last month to enthuse the party men to regain the ground lost from defections.
Sources said MLC Rayapati Srinivas raised the issue of FSA and said it was becoming increasingly difficult for Congress leaders to face people and redress their grievances. Taking a cue, other leaders also joined the chorus and sought to know how the party would revive its fortunes if FSA was not rolled back. The FSA was bothering the consumers more than the power cuts and would prove costly for the Congress in the next elections. Mr. Kiran Reddy then admitted that the situation was indeed grave as power was just not available. “The situation is unlikely to change immediately. We will face further crisis in the next two months. There is no surplus power that can be purchased by us thereafter,” he was quoted as saying.
The Chief Minister stated that Government was spending Rs. 7,000 crore towards power subsidy . He went on to add that the FSA in fact was planned way back in 2009 but was put on hold due to the general elections.