Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao has given his nod for a proposal to increase the power tariff and RTC bus charges. Reviewing the functioning of Energy and Transport departments here on Wednesday, the Chief Minister said that despite best efforts by the government, these departments are still incurring losses. However, he directed the officials not to burden the common man.
Explaining the circumstances that led to power tariff hike, the Chief Minister said both the Discoms in the state have borrowed Rs 2,144 crore for augmenting the power supply system like providing additional sub-stations and transformers. “We have spent Rs 2,700 crore for purchasing power to ensure uninterrupted power supply in the state during the last year,” he said.
KCR also pointed out that the government has spent Rs 2,400 crore for augmenting the power utility to ensure nine-hour power supply to farmers. The increase in salaries of employees also burdened the power sector, he said.
Assuring that the power tariff hike will not burden the common man, the Chief Minister said that only consumers using more than 100 units of power will be affected. Of the 86 lakh domestic power consumers in the state, around 60 lakh consume less that 100 units monthly. Consumers under this category will be excluded from the hike.
Though, the Discoms proposed a hike of 10 per cent for industries, the Chief Minister directed the officials to limit the tariff hike to 7 per cent. With the Chief Minister giving green light, the Telangana State Electricity Regulatory Commission (TSERC) is expected to announce tariff hike on Thursday.
10 per cent hike in bus fares:- There is no respite for RTC bus commuters as the State government has approved a proposal to increase the bus charges including Palle Velugu, the buses that operate services in rural areas of the state. The Chief Minister accepted a proposal put forth by officials of the state transport corporation to increase fare by Rs 1 upto a distance of 30 km for Palle Velugu buses. The fare will increase by Rs 2 or more for a distance more than 30 km, said officials. The charges for other category buses like Luxury, Garuda and Express services will increase by 10 per cent.