IEP Chandigarh, November 18
Haryana Chief Minister, Sh. Manohar Lal attended the 83rd meeting of the Forum of Regulators, organised by the Haryana Electricity Regulatory Commission as chief guest here today. Addressing the chairpersons and members of the Electricity Regulatory Commissions from other states, the Chief Minister said that in the last 8 years, Haryana has done remarkable work in the power sector, which has paved the way for Haryana to become one of the leading states in the country in terms of providing electricity.
He said that with the objective of providing 24-hour electricity to the villages, the state government initiated ‘Mhara Gaon-Jagmag Gaon Yojana’ from Kurukshetra in 2016, adding that today, 5,680 villages in the state; about 80 percent villages are getting 24-hour power supply.
Free electricity is no electricity
Talking about the concept of free electricity, as some states have done, the Chief Minister said that Haryana has rejected this concept as ‘free electricity is no electricity’. “This neither benefits the consumers nor the government. The people of Haryana have also understood this and are fully supporting the government,” he added. Sh. Manohar Lal said that the state government has taken stringent steps to check non-payment of electricity bills. He said that the government started an initiative and appealed to the citizens across the state to pay the bills, which garnered public cooperation and today Haryana is setting up new dimensions in the power sector.
The Chief Minister said that in order to strengthen the power sector, the state government provided relief to the consumers by waiving off the overcharge. “Not only this, defaulted consumers were given an option to pay the principal amount of their electricity bills in installments and the interest and surcharge of crores of rupees was also waived off. On the strength of these initiatives taken by the state government, Haryana has become one of the leading states in the Energy Efficiency Rank, in the last two years,” he asserted.
No hike in power tariffs in last 8 years
Chief Minister, Sh. Manohar Lal said that the state government has not increased the electricity rates in the last 8 years, and has instead brought relief to the people by reducing the power tariffs. He said that the Fuel Surcharge Adjustment (FSA) was 37 paise, which was abolished. “Not only this, the electricity rate was Rs 4.50 per unit up to 150 units, which was reduced and the rate was fixed at Rs 2.50 per unit up to 200 units and Rs 2 per unit for monthly electricity consumption up to 50 units,” he added.
Sh. Manohar Lal further said that the state government was thinking that more concessions can be given to the people who consume up to 50 units of electricity; so that the poor families can get relief. For this, the government will discuss the proposal with the Electricity Regulatory Commission, he said.
By reducing line loss, saved power corporations from losses
The Chief Minister said that the line loss in the state was 29 percent in 2014, which has come down to 14 percent today. With this, about Rs 6,000 crore have been saved and due to the efforts of the government and power corporations, today all the four power corporations of Haryana are in a position of dividend, he said, adding that the government has laid emphasis on curbing electricity theft, reducing line loss and strengthening the metering system.
Work done on infrastructural development
Sh. Manohar Lal said that work has also been done on infrastructural development to ensure uninterrupted power supply. “To strengthen the broadcasting network, 57 new sub-stations have been established at a cost of Rs. 3,679 crore and the capacity of 522 sub-stations has also been increased, from October 2014 till now,” he asserted. He said that 50,000 new transformers were also installed in the state with addition of transmission lines of 1,895 km. Not only this, 2,539 dangerous lines passing over houses, colonies, ponds and schools have been removed to avoid any untoward incident.
Target to provide 1 lakh solar connections
Sh. Manohar Lal said that almost free electricity is being given in the agriculture sector in Punjab and Haryana; but the Haryana government has also emphasised on promoting the use of solar energy. “Under this, 30,000 solar connections have been given and the work of giving 50,000 more solar connections is underway. A target has been set to provide a total of 1 lakh solar connections,” he added. The Chief Minister further said that the use of solar energy has resulted in the fact that earlier a total of Rs 7,200 crore was given as subsidy on electricity, whereas today Rs 5,500 crore is given as subsidy. Apart from this, to promote the use of solar energy in government buildings, the Rooftop Solar Policy has been implemented.
Work also done in direction of water conservation
Understanding the need of the future, the Chief Minister said that the state government has also laid emphasis on water conservation. “To ensure that the future generation does not face water crisis, the government has made ‘Mera Pani-Meri Virasat scheme, so that along with land, water can also be inherited to the future generation. Under this, the farmers are being given an incentive of Rs 7,000 per acre for growing alternative crops instead of paddy. As a result, alternative crops have been cultivated in place of paddy in about 1 lakh acres of land in the state,” he asserted.
Sh. Manohar Lal said that in this regulatory forum, chairpersons and members of the Electricity Regulatory Commission of all the states will discuss several topics including better delivery of facilities to the common man. This will ensure more efficiency in the power sector by sharing best practices being adopted by different states with other states.
On the occasion, Chairman of Haryana Electricity Regulatory Commission Sh. R.K. Pachnanda, chairpersons and members of Electricity Regulatory Commissions from other states were present.