The new grouping of consumers set to be rolled out by state power distribution companies (Discoms)—based on current month’s consumption and dispensing the older system that was based on previous year’s consumption—is not only expected to benefit domestic consumers at large, but also help the debt-ridden power utilities in plugging gaps in its delivery system.
About 1.43 crore domestic consumers could enjoy the benefits, depending on their consumption, as their tariff will be solely based on the power they use in the present as opposed to the previous system of being billed based on the past usage.
The discoms made the proposal, which has also been cleared by the Andhra Pradesh Electricity Regulatory Commission (APERC) for roll out from April 1, after analysing the past five years’ consumption pattern of the domestic users. Initial projections indicate that around Rs60 crore burden would be eased off the consumers’ head because of the new initiative.
“The objective of de-linking tariff with past pattern is to usher in transparency and accountability, besides incentivising the genuine consumers for energy conservation. The new method will give the power to consumers to plan their energy consumption and regulate their expenses. At the same time, their future consumption will not be affected. Why should genuine consumers, who contribute for energy conservation, be burdened just because they used more power last year?
In other terms, it is like a prepaid connection where the consumer only pays for what he/she uses,” APTRANSCO joint managing director KVN Chakradhar Babu told TNIE.