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City discoms quiet on power tariff hike, AAP takes credit

Neelam Pandey, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, December 21, 2013
First Published: 23:59 IST(21/12/2013) | Last Updated: 00:01 IST(22/12/2013)

Your power bill may not see much of a hike in 2014 with discoms unsure of how their demand for a tariff hike would be met by the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), which will most likely form the government in Delhi after its referendum ends on Monday.

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With both the BJP and AAP promising cuts in power bills during their campaigns, the parties have been quick to claim credit for the development even though it is ultimately the power regulator DERC that will make the decision on whether there will be a hike or not.

Discoms usually file their annual revenue requirement at the end of every year and state the exact percentage of hike they want from DERC. But this time round they have merely submitted their financial details and have admitted that there is a shortfall. “They have not asked for a hike and have left it to us to decide,” said PD Sudhakar, DERC chairman.

AAP leader Manish Sisodia said that recent agitations against power bills had brought in greater transparency, “They can’t simply ask for any figure as people can check their accounts. This is a small step, but in the right direction”.

AAP chief Arvind Kejriwal has said that auditing of discoms will be his top priority and during his campaign had promised to cut power bills by 50%.

Delhi BJP president Vijay Goel said discoms were now afraid of getting caught for fudging their accounts. “This is all because of our protests,” he said.

Tata Power Delhi Distribution Limited, which supplies north Delhi, has filed its profit and loss account to DERC but left the decision on whether a power tariff hike is needed or not to DERC. BSES Rajdhani Power Limited and BSES Yamuna Power Limited are yet to submit their requirements.

Sources say the total shortfall of the three discoms is nearly `16,000 crore which can only be adjusted through tariff correction.

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