Andhra Pradesh

A.P. govt. has no plans to privatise power sector: Energy Minister

Cabinet sub-committee’s recommendations on regularisation of outsourced workers are awaited, says Balineni Srinivasa Reddy.  

The government has no intention to privatise the power sector, Energy Minister Balineni Srinivasa Reddy has said.

Describing the reports that the government is planning to sell away the Rayalaseema Thermal Power Plant (RTPP) to those keen on taking it over as mere speculations, the Minister appealed to the employees not to believe in the falsehoods being spread by vested interests.

“The government is committed to solving all the issues pertaining to the sector, which has been brought to its notice,” he told the media at the Secretariat on Wednesday, while pointing out that the State government has conveyed in writing about its opposition to the Electricity Amendment Bill, 2020.

Smart meter

Mr. Srinivasa Reddy said the smart meters were being fixed to agriculture pumpset connections with the consent of farmers and that the government would not renege on its promise of free nine-hour power supply to the farm sector during the daytime.

“The government is working to achieve the capacity addition of 10,000 megawatt solar energy to exclusively cater to the needs of the farm sector. The agriculture feeder network is also being strengthened with an investment of ₹1,700 crore,” he said.

Outsourced workers

The Minister said that 7,000 linemen and 172 assistant engineers had been recruited in a short span of time to overcome the shortage of manpower.

“The government is sympathetic to the problems being faced by the outsourced workers. However, the matter of regularisation of their services is under the consideration of a Cabinet sub-committee and the recommendations are awaited,” he said.

The EPF and GPF, compassionate appointments and many such issues related to the human resources would be sorted out at the earliest, the Minister said, adding that the government would leave no stone unturned to improve the operational efficiencies.

Energy secretary N. Srikant, APGenco MD B. Sreedhar and DISCOMs’ CMDs Nagalakshmi Selvarajan, H. Haranatha Rao and J. Padma Janardhan Reddy were present on the occasion.

Meeting with JAC

Earlier in the day, the Minister held deliberations with a delegation of the Andhra Pradesh State Power Employees’ Joint Action Committee which has demanded that the government sort out certain critical issues being faced by the power sector immediately, if it wants them not to go for a state-wide agitation.

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Printable version | Nov 26, 2020 3:34:38 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/andhra-pradesh/ap-govt-has-no-plans-to-privatise-power-sector-energy-minister/article32967564.ece

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