Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) president Sukhbir Singh Badal today said the Congress government was proposing to play a fraud with the industrial sector by promising power at Rs five per cent unit but actually delivering the same at even higher rates than those prevailing during SAD-BJP tenure.In a statement here, the SAD president said , the proposed tariff plan, which had been promised since the last nine months and was expected to be implemented this month, had very cleverly cloaked the final cost which would be borne by the industry. “The tariff plan of Rs 5 per unit has a variable factor which includes an additional levy of Rs 195 per kva at 80 per cent of connected load besides electricity duty, octroi and infrastructure development fee. This effectively will make the tariff more than Rs 6 per unit. Small scale units, particularly those who don’t run for more than 12 hours per day will see their tariff going up even further because they will have to pay additional levy on sanctioned load whether they run their units or not”.Terming the entire exercise as a cruel joke on the industry which had been promised a flat tariff of Rs five per unit by chief minister Capt Amarinder Singh, the SAD president said “you will see a majority of consumers getting even more enhanced bills than they received during the SAD-BJP tenure. This move will also make the small scale industry unviable as they will have to bear the brunt of variable charges”.
Mr Badal said this was not all. The Congress government had recommended and implemented a draconian power tariff hike on domestic consumers in the garb of subsidizing the industry. “The truth is that the industry will not benefit and domestic consumers have been saddled with an unprecedented hike of 12 per cent with effect from April 2017. Besides this the government has also implemented a municipal tax equivalent to two per cent of power bills in municipal areas. “The SAD will not allow this injustice against both commercial and domestic consumers and will soon come out with an action plan to force the government to withdraw its arbitrary hikes and give power to both industrial and domestic consumers at a flat rate of Rs five per unit”, he added.Speaking about the performance of the SAD-BJP government, he said the SAD-BJP did not raise power tariff for two consecutive years in 2015-16 and 2016-17. He said in fact the government slashed the energy rates for industrial users to promote growth in 2016. Small scale industry consumption rates were slashed by 38 paisa per unit, medium scale by 36 paisa per unit and large scale by 11 paisa per unit. “Besides this peak load hour restrictions were also removed”, he added. EOM