Maharashtra industries’ body to hit the streets against high power bills

Demanding a rollback of the hike in power tariff for industrial use, the Maharashtra Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture (MACCIA), the apex industries’ body in the State, has called on its representatives across the State to protest in front of the respective district collector’s office on February 12.

Santosh Mandlecha, the president of MACCIA, said on Wednesday, “We demand that the hike in power tariff announced for industries from September 2018 should be cancelled and electricity rates for industrial use should be kept constant till March 2020 as per the decision of November 2016.” Mr. Mandlecha said the government would have to pay ₹3,400 crore to the Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Limited to compensate for the change in tariff for the period from September 2018 to March 2020.

According to industry representatives, even though the power tariff announced by the Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Commission is 3% to 6%, the lack of a power factor incentive and a penalty applied has caused electricity bills of industrial units to go up by 20% to 25%.

According to Pratap Hogade, president, Maharashtra Electricity Consumer Organisation, the increase in power tariff is directly affecting the industrial and economic growth of the State. “Ideally, the rise in electricity use from 2011-12 to present should have been 40%, but it stands at around only 10%. This also reflects that industrial growth hasn’t been very encouraging,” Mr. Hogade said.

The MACCIA representatives from across the State will meet district-wise MLAs, MPs and other elected representatives to submit the memorandum of demands. A detailed letter will be sent to Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and the Energy Minister Chan


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