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Acting tough against power outages, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government today issued policy directions under which power discoms will pay penalty to consumers in case of unscheduled power cuts, which will be adjusted in their electricity bills.
The discoms have to restore supply within one hour failing which they will be fined Rs 50 for first two hours each and every subsequent hour, the penalty for power cuts will be Rs 100.
The government has issued policy directions to the Delhi Electricity Regulatory Commission (DERC) to penalise power distribution companies if they don’t provide uninterrupted power supply to residents.
“DERC will put the schedule of power cuts in different parts of Delhi in advance for the next 15 days on its website and will update it daily.
“If there is unscheduled power cut in any area of Delhi, discoms have to restore supply within one hour failing which discoms will be fined Rs 50 for first two hours each and every subsequent hour, the penalty for power cuts will be Rs 100,” Power Minister Satyendra Jain told a press conference here.
As per policy directions sent to the regulatory body, discoms will have to pay penalty directly to the consumers by adjusting in their electricity bills.
According to the minister, privatisation in power was done to ensure that discoms provide uninterrupted power supply. He hoped that new directions would now make the power situation better.
Jain said that the government has issued directions to DERC under the provision of Section 108 of the Electricity Act 2003 and the new direction will be implemented within one week in the capital.
Delhi has three power distribution companies for different parts of the city– BSES Rajdhani Power Limited, BSES Yamuna Power Limited and Tata Power.
“We have asked DERC to impose penalty on discoms for unscheduled power cuts every hour. Till now, such penality is imposed on power distribution companies on monthly-basis,” the minister said.
In case of disruption of power of an individual consumer the supply shall be restored within three hours of complaint and failure to do so will result in a penalty of Rs 100 per hour.
The power minister said that all payments of compensation will be made suo-moto by the discoms by way of adjustment against current and/or future bills for supply of electricity but not later than 90 days.
“DERC has been asked to keep a record of all unscheduled power cuts in the national capital and the extent of consumers affected by each power cut on the basis of complaints received from public or the government or on its own,” he said.
If the compensation is not paid suo moto by the discoms and if any affected consumer approaches the DERC/CGRF etc. for claiming the compensation, the amount of compensation in such cases shall be Rs 5,000 or five times the compensation payable on suo moto basis, whichever is higher.
“If any consumer approaches DERC after 90 days with a complaint that he has not received his compensation, DERC will order and ensure payment to all the consumers affected by that power cut,” Jai added.
Power department said that the compensation amount paid by a discom will not be a pass through in the Annual Revenue Requirement (ARR) of the discoms.
Last week, DERC had approved a 4 to 6 per cent increase in power purchase adjustment cost (PPAC), or the fuel surcharge, as it restored a levy charged to compensate the discoms for rise in cost of buying electricity on account of increase in coal and gas prices.
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