Former Puducherry MP wants Assembly to pass resolution against electricity privatisation

Electricity Department does not suffer from any of the serious deficiencies, says Ramadass

March 29, 2022 02:47 pm | Updated March 30, 2022 10:32 am IST - PUDUCHERRY

M. Ramadass

M. Ramadass

M. Ramadass, former MP, has called upon the Legislative Assembly, set to convene on Wednesday, to adopt a resolution appealing to the Union government to abandon its proposal to privatise the functions of the Puducherry Electricity Department.

In a statement, Mr. Ramadass also appealed that the House pass another resolution requesting the Central government to include Puducherry under the ambit of 15th Finance Commission as was done in the case of the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir.

“Besides passing the vote on account, the Assembly should consider two important resolutions drawing the attention of the Central government on two contemporary but very vital issues concerning the welfare of the people and the Union Territory of Puducherry,” he said.

Mr. Ramadass pointed out that the employees of the Electricity Department and the people of Puducherry had opposed the move of the Central government and these sentiments should be articulated by the representatives of the people in the Assembly.

Established in 1956, the Electricity Department had grown into a mammoth energy infrastructure. “It does not suffer from any of the serious deficiencies warranting privatisation. The department does not generate electricity and hence the question of loss in generation of electricity does not arise.,” he said.

Likewise, there were no major problems in the distribution of electricity and the power cuts were minimal. Power was distributed to different sections of the society at affordable rates thereby promoting the public good of the people. The department had started earning profits in the last three years. The Electricity reforms advocated by the Central government had been faithfully carried out by the department making it more smart.

Therefore, the Assembly which was the custodian of public welfare of the people, should unanimously resolve to request the Government of India to drop its plan of privatising this public utility of Puducherry, he said.

On the second resolution, he pointed out that Puducherry, for all practical purpose, was a State, with an Assembly and a Public Account. It was a member of the GST council, discharged all the functions envisaged in the State and concurrent lists, was recognised for three-tier governance and also contributed to central revenues and participated in the Presidential election.

Puducherry should have been elevated into a State when Goa was accorded this status and should have been included in the Finance Commission. Puducherry suffered serious financial transfers due to the failure of the Central government., he said

“Therefore, the Assembly of Puducherry should resolve to request the Central government to amend Article 280(3) of the Indian Constitution and include Puducherry under the recommendations of the Finance Commission failing which to provide the annual grant normally given to Goa,” Mr. Ramadass said.

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