The Delhi assembly on Wednesday witnessed heated debate over the new power tariffs with the opposition BJP showing reluctance to buy the argument that electricity tariff has been reduced.
Instead, BJP kept charging the government of increasing the fixed charges per month despite Delhi Power Minister Satyendra Jain assured that despite hike in fixed charges, there will be no increase in electricity bills in all categories.
Jain said the total electricity bills of every domestic consumer in Delhi across different categories have come down.
Jain said in its tariff order applicable for the year 2018-19, the commission has reduced electricity prices for domestic power consumption of up to 200 units per month by Re 1 per unit to Rs 3 per unit.
Domestic power consumers consuming 200 units – 400 units of electricity per month will pay Rs 1.45 per unit lesser at Rs 4.50 per unit.
Similarly, electricity consumption between 401- 800 units per month will be charged at Rs 6.5 per unit against previous tariff of Rs 7.30 per unit. Tariffs for non-domestic, industry and other category consumers have also been reduced.
However, Jain said fixed charges have been substantially raised across all categories.
“The fixed rate had to be raised as the Central government increased the fixed rates of electricity produced by power plants from which the Delhi government purchases power by 50 paise per unit,” Jain said.
Jain said the overall power charges continue to remain less, and the increase in fixed charges will make no impact on the pockets of consumers.
With revised tariffs, the fixed charges upto 2 KW has increased to Rs 125 from Rs 20. From 2-5 KW the fixed charges have increased to Rs 145 from Rs 35.
Similarly, the consumers using electricity from 5-15 KW has to pay now Rs 175 as fixed charge which was earlier only Rs 45.
Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia, who was also present in the House, said this is for the fourth year that electricity rates were not increased in the city.
But, Leader of Opposition Vijender Gupta said in the assembly that the rates have increased and accused the government of misleading the House.
Gupta said the government has increased fixed charges upto 5 to 7 times and it will be a big burden on the pockets of consumers.
“You are misleading people of Delhi. In guise of reduction in user charges, you have actually hiked the overall charges,” Gupta said.
Gupta also accused the AAP government for being hand in glove with power companies.