CHANDIGARH (TIP): In an apparent AAP effect, Haryana government today gave a major relief to power consumers by reducing tariff in the state. While the Congress Government rolled back tariff hike for consumption of up to 500 units by domestic consumers, power rate for farm sector was reduced by 60 per cent for current fiscal. The decision, which will cost Rs 600 crore per annum to the state exchequer, will benefit 38 lakh domestic consumers, which account for 95 per cent of total consumers, and 5.50 lakh agriculture consumers. It comes just a fortnight after Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal announced a 50 per cent cut in electricity tariffs for households consuming up to 400 units of power per month, fulfilling a second key electoral promise of his Aam Aadmi Party (AAP).
“Government has withdrawn the tariff increase (about 13 per cent) made from April 2013 onward for domestic consumers consuming up to 500 units per month. Moreover, the Fuel Surcharge Adjustment (FSA) of financial year 2013-14 will also remain same,” chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda said in a release. “As a result of this decision, up to 1000 units bimonthly consumption will get the benefit of old slab system as well as reduction in tariff and FSA to the last year’s level,” he said. The domestic sector power rate from April 1, 2013 were Rs 5.24, Rs 5.94 and Rs 6.32 per unit for those consuming up to 250 units, between 250 and 500 units and above 500 units respectively. Giving relief to farm consumers, Hooda said tariff being charged to agriculture consumers has been reduced by 60 per cent in the state.
“Now the agriculture consumer will have to pay 10 paisa per unit (present rate 25 paise per unit) or Rs 15 per BHP per month,” he said. Hooda said that the decision, which comes just months ahead of Lok Sabha polls, would provide relief to the electricity consumers in the state and the entire expenditure would be borne by the state government. Haryana government had already decided not to hike power tariff for 2014-15.