A day after the Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Ltd proposed a hike in the power tariff, private player Reliance Energy also proposed a hike ranging from 10% to 45%.
The company, a power distribution arm of the Reliance Infrastructure Ltd, supplies electricity to 20 lakh domestic consumers in the suburbs of Mumbai and Thane.
Reliance Energy has submitted its petition to state power sector regulator Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Commission (MERC), which will take a decision after due hearing.
For consumers who use up to 100 units of power every month, the company wants to increase the rate from the existing Rs4.67 to Rs5.14 a unit (a hike of 10%).
A majority of the company’s domestic consumers (92%), who use between 100 and 300 units of power, may face a hike in rate from the present Rs6.67 to Rs7.73 (16%)
Consumers with consumption of up to 300 units are subsidised consumers.
The steepest hike has been proposed for consumers with a monthly usage ranging from 301 to 500 units. They may end up paying Rs11.27 a unit from present rate of Rs7.75 (a 45% hike).
High-end consumers with a monthly usage of more 500 units may have to pay Rs13.97 a unit from the current Rs10.45 (34%). The consumers in this category bear the additional burden of the cross subsidy passed on to subsidised consumers.
The hike in the wheeling charges has been proposed at 120% — from Rs1.24 to Rs2.73.
According to an official from the company, the hike proposed for wheeling charges was to recover the charges that were deferred for the past few years, as per an MERC order. “The cross-subsidy has to be reduced over the years as per the national tariff policy, and it has left an end effect in the proposal. The hike proposed will recover the estimated cost of distribution and the past revenue gaps as well,” he added.
The proposed hike for industrial and commercial consumers is between 18% and 20% — ranging from Rs10.81 to Rs12.69. The proposed hike for consumers below the poverty line is 66% —they will have to pay Rs3.30 a unit from present rate of Rs1.99 a unit.