Thursday, October 01, 2020

Chandigarh

Refer Bill 2020 to the standing committee - AIPEF

VINOD GUPTA | June 26, 2020 02:18 PM

CHANDIGARH:All India Power Engineers Federation (AIPEF) has termed the press release of
Ministry of Power misleading as there is no change proposed in the draft
Amendment bill 2020 and it only tries to justify its stand over the bill, said V K Gupta federation spokesperson.
Power Minister claims that reforms were essential for the sector as enough time
has been given to states to correct the tariff and bring down the losses.

There have been no changes in the draft Electricity (Amendment) Bill 2020
having provision of privatization through the introduction of distribution
sublicense & franchise, abolition of subsidy & cross-subsidy,
establishing of Electricity Contract Enforcement Authority (ECEA),
Appointment of SERC Chairman & Members at the central level and new renewable energy policy.
The bill is proposed to be tabled in the coming monsoon session of Parliament.
In case the draft has been revised after receipt of comments then this needs to be put up in the public domain.As electricity is a concurrent subject the central
the government should give a clear commitment that the draft bill would be
referred to the standing committee on energy and thereby give all States and
stakeholders an opportunity to give their suggestions and views on the
amended draft bill.

There has been no change in the policy of having the provision of privatization
through the introduction of distribution sub-license & franchise.
The privatization of urban areas will financially cripple the Discoms and
they will not be able to pay the salary and pension of employees.
The draft bill did not mention anything about privatizing the power distribution
in union territories but MoP went ahead and ordered the privatization of power
distribution in UTs without any discussion with any stakeholders.
The statement that both agriculture and domestic consumers paying their bills will get an uninterrupted electricity supply but about the subsidy amount payable to them by the state.Which private companies will give them uninterrupted supply if they do not pay bills for three months in absence of subsidy amount payable to them.
The financial health of the states is so bad that even now they do not pay subsidy in time and are often delayed by several months.
The Union Power Minister said that the states responsible for delay in filling regulatory commission reports and so they are centralizing it.

Looking at the intention of Central Govt to rush through Electricity (Amendment) Bill 2020 amid Covid-19 Pandemic and continued disaster AIPEF & NCCOEEE will hold a meeting within a week to decide the future course of action to stall privatization in power distribution.
AIPEF warns that any attempt to rush through the bill and any attempt to bypass the standing committee would lead to nationwide agitation.

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