Noida residents are up in arms against the government move to explore tariff hike to provide uninterrupted power supply.
Federation of Noida RWAs representative NP Singh said, "We don't want better power supply at higher rates. Why should we pay more? It is the UPPCL's responsibility and mandate to provide power 24X7. Noida is a declared no power cut zone. We instead demand fixed charges should be reduced proportionately to power cuts."
Trying to cope with increasing demand for power in Noida and Ghaziabad, the Uttar Pradesh government is exploring the possibility of introducing differential power tariffs for domestic electricity consumers of these two NCR towns.
The idea is to ensure round-the-clock power supply to high-rises and housing societies at a rate higher than the prevalent one.
Suresh Tiwari, another representative of Federation of Noida RWAs, said, "I today spoke to the UPPCL MD and lodged my protest against any hike. He has assured he would take us on board before deciding on the matter."
Sources in the government said the proposal, if found feasible, might be sent to the UP electricity regulatory commission for consideration.
And it's not only about round-the-clock power supply.
"The idea is to have a situation where people, groups and districts would be free to choose supply frequency of their choice on varying tariff rates," said another official.
Currently, UPPCL charges Rs. 3.85 per unit from domestic consumers in the two cities. The hike for uninterrupted power supply can be of a couple of rupees.
"Residents are already paying much by way of back-up charges to housing societies," he said.
CL Gupta, superintending engineer of Paschimanchal Vidyut Vitran Nigam Limited, power discom in Noida, said, "Unless UP electricity regulatory commission approves the hiked tariff proposal, we can not implement it."
Spokesperson of Noida Power Company Limited, power discom in Greater Noida, S Mohanty, said, "People do not pay more though during long power cuts they verbally tell us that they are ready to pay more for continuous supply. In the past we had planned differential payment system for giving continuous power supply but it could not take shape."