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Sheila promises relief to power consumers

Considering the widespread resentment among consumers following Delhi Electricity Regulatory Commission (DERC) announcement of a 21.77% hike in power tariff , chief minister Sheila Dikshit has hinted at giving “some relief” to power consumers in the Capital.

delhi Updated: Aug 27, 2011 01:53 IST
Atul Mathur

Considering the widespread resentment among consumers following Delhi Electricity Regulatory Commission (DERC) announcement of a 21.77% hike in power tariff , chief minister Sheila Dikshit has hinted at giving “some relief” to power consumers in the Capital.

The chief minister said that her government would explore the hike in power tariff — which, residents fear, will burn huge holes in their pockets — and consider if consumers could be given some benefits.

"I have yet to see the new tariff order. Let me take a look at it first, and we will definitely do something for the people of Delhi," Dikshit said. http://www.hindustantimes.com/images/HTPopups/270811/27_08_pg04a.jpg

While maintaining that a hike in power tariff had become almost imminent, Haroon Yusuf, Delhi power minister, said the government had given subsidy to frugal domestic consumers in the past too.

“We try and give quality supply to the people of Delhi. Electricity tariff in the capital is still among the lowest in the country,” Yusuf said.

After last tariff hike in 2006, the Delhi government gave a subsidy of 25-55 paise per unit to Delhiites for almost 3 years.

However, the subsidy was withdrawn after the Congress government comfortably won all the seven parliamentary seats in 2009 elections.

It continued to give a subsidy of R1 per unit to consumers who restricted their power consumption to 200 units in summers and 150 units in winters through a Cabinet decision in 2009. In 2010 too, the Cabinet gave subsidy to frugal domestic users and agriculture users.

Interestingly, the Cabinet decision lapsed on March 31, 2011 and since then the government has kept the decision to continue the benefits on suspended animation.

“There is a possibility that the Cabinet will once again clear the proposal to provide subsidy to poor people who restrict their power consumption,” a senior Delhi government official said.

Rai is the new power secy

HT Correspondent
htreporters@hindustantimes.com
New Delhi: Former NDMC chairman Parimal Rai has been appointed as the new principal secretary in Delhi government’s power department.

A 1985-batch IAS officer, Rai is considered close to chief minister Sheila Dikshit and has held several important assignments in Delhi in the past. Rai spent more than three years in the New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC).

The power department has always been close to chief minister Sheila Dikshit. The CM is said to be instrumental in several power sector reforms, including privatisation of power distribution system in the capital.

Dikshit has also kept the portfolio herself for more than three years and gave it out to Haroon Yusuf in February this year. Sources said officers who are in the good books of Dikshit are given the posting of the secretary of power department.

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