Your electricity bill will go up marginally from this month. Reason: the Delhi Electricity Regulatory Commission (DERC) has approved a provisional 5% fuel price adjustment surcharge. The charge will be applicable for the coming three months starting February.
On an average, this means an increase of 15 to 32 paisa per unit or a hike of 2 to 3% in electricity bills. Simply put, an average household that consumes 300 units in a month and pays Rs 1100 will now have to pay Rs 1160 per month.DERC officials said this increase is currently applicable for three months and depends on the hike in fuel surcharge by power generating companies. After three months, the matter will be reviewed again and there may be an increase or decrease in the surcharge percentage.
Officials said the power distribution companies -- Tata Power Delhi Distribution, BSES Rajdhani Power Limited (BRPL) and BSES Yamuna Power Limited (BYPL) -- had submitted representations to the DERC in January and had sought seeking an increase in the variable cost of tariff to the tune of 9.12%, 10.75% and 12.43% because of the fuel price adjustment surcharge (FPA).
"The commission is of the view that a proper prudence check should be undertaken before the additional burden of the magnitude proposed by the distribution utilities is passed on to the consumers," said a senior power department official.
Officials said the commission approved a provisional 5% FPA for the quarter ending October to December 2011 for all the three distribution companies. Hence, any electricity bill generated in February will reflect an increase of 2-3%.
Welcoming the decision, distribution companies said they have to pay power suppliers such as National Thermal Power Corporation and generation companies of Delhi such as Indraprastha Generation Company Ltd and Pragati Power Corporation Ltd on a monthly basis and the present method of recovery of these expenses takes them at least two years to get returns.
NDPL and BSES officials said there had been drastic changes in fuel prices in the past two years, which have taken a toll on their balance sheets. With more hikes expected in the coming days, discoms said fuel costs had to be passed on to consumers.