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A power tariff hike of up to seven per cent announced in Delhi last night has been withdrawn in less than 24 hours amid a chorus of political criticism ahead of assembly polls just months away. The Delhi Electricity Regulatory Commission's hike would have come into effect from tomorrow, but for the first time in recent history, it has been withdrawn. The regulator had announced the surcharge in response to the demands of three private power distribution companies in Delhi, who claim they are running into losses.
Officials said the hike was withdrawn because of "new inputs" from the National Thermal Power Corporation on power production costs. The overnight turnaround raised speculation about a political intervention, with elections in Delhi expected early next year. If the new tariffs had come into effect, consumers would have to pay seven percent, 4.5 per cent or 2.5 per cent more on their electricity bills.
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