The Bangalore Electricity Supply Company (Bescom) has proposed a massive increase in fixed charges in its tariff revision petition submitted to the Karnataka Electricity Regulatory Commission (KERC) for the upcoming year.
For LT 2 (a) (I) or domestic consumers, the fixed charges for the first kW is proposed to be increased from ₹100 to ₹150 and for every additional kW after up to 50 kW, the hike would be from ₹110 to ₹300. Bescom has asked for a huge hike for every kW after 50 kW (from ₹175 to ₹450), according to a notification.
While energy charges have been proposed to be reduced, a hike in fixed charges is necessary due to increased purchasing cost of power, according to senior officials. The hike will be applicable to consumers of both Low Tension (LT) and High Tension (HT) consumption.
Recently, trade bodies like Federation of Karnataka Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FKCCI) and Karnataka Small Scale Industries Association (KASSIA) had mentioned that the proposed increase in electricity tariff would hurt many businesses which come under the HT category, especially if fixed charges are increased.
However, Bescom officials said that they have proposed for more fixed charges for HT consumers to ensure that the charges are equally distributed among all consumers. “Many HT consumers go for open access connections and hence, other users of Bescom are burdened with additional charges. To lessen this burden on others, this has been asked for,” said an official.
Fixed charge increase has also been proposed for Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) and Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) (streetlights), while no changes have been asked for with regard to Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Ltd. (BMRCL). “These are nominal costs and will not reflect too much on the bills,” said a source in Bescom.