UT administrator Shivraj Patil has directed senior officials of the administration to speed up restructuring of the electricity department by turning it into a corporate entity. The project is hanging fire for over a decade.
The administration in 1998 had mooted a proposal of corporatisation of the electricity department, which was approved by the government of India. However, even after 14 years, the proposal is yet to see light of the day.
On the sideline of a public-hearing session, Patil highlighted the need for corporatisation of the department in line with corporatisation of power and electricity departments in other parts of the country.
The administration had decided to hire a consultant for preparing framework for restructuring of the electricity department.
The administration, at present, is struggling to cut down on its transmission and distribution (T&D) losses, which stands around 21%. As per the laid down guidelines, all states and UTs have to bring down transmission and distribution loss to 15%.
According to senior officials, Chandigarh compares poorly with many states, which have managed to keep a check on T&D losses.
The Joint Electricity Regulatory Commission (JERC) has been asking the administration for expediting the restructuring of the department for enhancing its efficiency.
Corporatisation will also help the administration in resolving the issue of staff shortage in the department. Under the current set up, there is only one post of superintending engineer in the department, which is held by MP Singh.
Senior officials said the superintending engineer had been entrusted with a wide range of responsibilities ranging from purchase of power to enforcement of rules.