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CESS to mop up power revenue

india Updated: Sep 03, 2006 01:47 IST
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THE MADHYANCHAL power distribution company on Saturday appointed the Cooperative Electric Supply Society (CESS) as its input-based franchisee to supply power to and collect revenue from 68,000 rural consumers under six Blocks of Lucknow. The franchisee will start its work from tomorrow. Till now, all these rural consumers were being served by LESA, one of Madhyanchal discom’s zones.

Initially, the agreement will be valid for one year. Thereafter, it may be extended further, depending on the merits and demerits of the arrangement.

An agreement for the franchisee was signed between Madhyanchal discom MD, BB Singh and CESS chairman, Sehadev Singh at the Shakti Bhawan here today, in the presence of Energy Minister, Shiv Pal Yadav, principal secretary (Energy) and UPPCL chairman AK Khurana, besides many others.

The six blocks under which the consumers will be served by the CESS now are Kakori, Mall, Malihabad, Sarojininagar, Banthara, Gosainganj, Mohanlalganj, Nagraon and Nigoha.

The Electricity Act, 2003, provides for the appointment of rural franchise.

As per the bipartite agreement, the discom will recover from the CESS the revenue at the rate of Rs 1.21 per unit. The CESS will, however, be entitled to withholding Rs 650 lakh annually as expenses towards staff salary, maintenance of electricity lines etc and many other administrative expenditures.

The CESS will be required to submit the revenue collected to the discom by the fixed date of every month, failing which the former can terminate the agreement after two- week’s notice.

Prior to 1997 also, the CESS was supplying power to Lucknow’s rural areas. But Mayawati Government disbanded the CESS giving the responsibility to LESA.

Sources said CESS had then turned to be a big defaulter. Besides, corruption was prevalent and the consumers were a harried lot. But a senior UPPCL official claimed that this time the system was totally different. “We have appointed it merely a franchise with strict terms and conditions,” he said.