In an unprecedented move in the state, the electricity regulator on Monday summarily rejected the UP Power Corporation Ltd’s (UPPCL) tariff proposal for 2013-14. Nevertheless, this does not imply that consumers have been spared the tariff hike.
This only means that now the UP Electricity Regulatory Commission (UPERC) will revise the tariff on its own that may not be in the manner as desired by the UPPCL in its proposal.
The UPERC rejected the proposal on the ground that the UPPCL did not submit CAG-audited balance sheets in support of its claims for the projected revenue deficit and consequent demand for tariff revision.
Saying that the audited accounts for FY 2010-11 (with CAG report) has not been submitted by the distribution companies, the commission in its detailed order signed by members Sree Ram and Meenakshi Singh observed, “In pursuance of the directions of the hon’ble appellate tribunal for electricity, powers conferred under section 64 of the Electricity Act, 2003, considering the deficiencies in the ARR petition, the commission has decided to initiate suo motu proceedings for determining the ARR and tariff for the FY 2013-14.”
The commission has also ordered the UPPCL/discoms to publish a public notice in leading newspapers, detailing the salient features of the ARR and the deficiencies as pointed out by it, within three days.
Taking note of a representation made by UP Rajya Vidyut Upbhokta Parishad president Avadhesh Kumar Verma, the UPERC had a few days ago sought clarifications on several points from the UPPCL. Among other things, it asked the corporation to explain the logic for proposing to link the electricity rates with number of supply hours. Chief engineer, UPPCL, M Gufran in his reply on March 8 told the commission it was a bit premature for the regulator to seek clarifications on tariff proposal at this stage.
Sources claimed the UPERC did not relish the reply. Welcoming the commission’s order, Verma said the UPPCL should focus on recovering its pending dues instead of trying to make for its deficit through the tariff hike.