KPTCL caught unawares?

BANGALORE Feb. 15. The Karnataka Power Transmission Corporation Ltd. (KPTCL) has been caught unawares by the Karnataka Electricity Regulatory Commission (KERC). That is why the former is taking so long to publicise its tariff petition.

In fact, the KPTCL Chairman and Managing Director, V.P. Baligar, has admitted that the corporation will need eight to 10 days more. This means that the tariff petition will be put up for public scrutiny only after the Kanakapura byelection on February 21.

Mr. Baligar denied that this delay was deliberate. The petition had to be translated into Kannada too, he said. "It has to be a ready reckoner for consumers who want to know how much more they will have to pay for their electricity." The drafting process was still on, he said.

Early this month, the KERC rejected the KPTCL's first tariff proposal and ERC (expected revenue from charges) calculations. That was after it spent time deliberating on the KPTCL's finances and its compliance with KERC directives.

Later, on February 8, the KPTCL submitted a revised ERC and tariff proposal. The KERC went through it in a day (on February 9), accepted it and ordered the KPTCL to put up the tariff proposal for public scrutiny from the week staring February 11.

Meanwhile, the KPTCL has also started two-hour load-shedding in all urban areas. Mr. Baligar explained this was because demand had gone beyond a sustainable 80 to 81 mu. (million units). "Today the demand was 83 mu. When it is between 89 and 83 mu., it is too high for us. We are hoping that it will come down in the coming days. But we have started random two-hour load-shedding in urban areas," he said. Reservoir levels were 40 per lower this year, he added.

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