New Delhi: Accusing private companies of supplying costly electricity, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Sunday urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to let the Delhi government scrap previous power agreements.
“If this permission is given, then the electricity tariff in Delhi will further come down,” the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader said at the launch of a scheme to redress disputes over electricity bills.
Kejriwal also declared that power companies would be fined if they cut electricity for more than one hour.
A preliminary report of the Comptroller and Auditor General, which stated that the capital’s three power discoms showed inflated loss, has given a shot in the arm for the AAP government which has accused these firms of fudging their account books.
He urged the prime minister to allow the Delhi government to buy cheaper power, saying this was available, the AAP tweeted.
He said power tariff was high in the national capital as Delhi was buying more than half its electricity needs at Rs.5.50 a unit.
“We have come to know that many power companies are ready to supply power at Rs.2.5 to Rs.3 a unit.
“When we can get electricity at this rate, why should we buy it for Rs.5 or Rs.5.50 a unit?
“When we examined the issue, we realized that the previous government had entered into an agreements valid for 30 years.
“The power companies now tell us that since these agreements are in place, you will have to buy power from us. The companies are pressurising us. Why should people suffer?”
The chief minister said: “We also appeal to the central government and Modi to allow us to cancel the costly agreements reached earlier with private companies.”
The one-time power amnesty scheme, which was launched in east Delhi’s Vinod Nagar, is for those who have complained of inflated bills, tampered billing meters and the ones who had unauthorised connections.
The one-month scheme will benefit about 2.5 lakh households, Kejriwal said. “I feel no scheme can be better than this. No matter how old the dispute is, those living in jhuggis (slum) can pay Rs.250 to settle it.”
Besides, he urged the power discoms to ensure that their staff do not issue inflated bills to the people.