Ex Cabinet Minister Dr. Anees Ahmed today met Nitin Raut Cabinet Minister for Power and demanded withdrawal of inflated power bills generated during lockdown period.
Anees in his deputation to Raut mentioned that the economic impact of the 2020 coronavirus pandemic in India has been largely disruptive. India’s growth in the fourth quarter of the fiscal year 2020 went down to 3.1% according to the Ministry of Statistics.
Unemployment rose from 6.7% in March to around 26% as on date. During the lockdown, an estimated 14 crore Indians (140 million) people lost employment while salaries were cut for many others.
More than 45% of households across the nation have reported an income drop as compared to the previous year. The Indian economy lost over ₹32,000 crore every day during the first 21-days of complete lockdown, Up to 53% of businesses in the country are projected to be significantly affected. Those in the informal sectors and daily wage groups have been at the most risk. A large number of farmers around the country who grow perishables also faced uncertainty.
In such a situation, ‘inflated’ power bill has come as a rude shock to the people of Maharashtra, expressed Anees Ahmed.
Ahmed alleged that the Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Commission (MERC) has increased the power tariff from April 1 and demanded to roll back looking at the consequences of pandemic in India.
Anees suggested that Government of Maharashtra should come out with a policy to waive electricity bills for consumption up to certain units on the lines of relief provided to people by Kerla, Delhi and Madhya Pradesh Governments.
Delhi Government has come up with a model where consumption Upto 200 units is free to provide comfort to poor and middle class who are caught in a vicious cycle due to COVID-19.
Kerala Government is giving 50%aid in electricity bills.
Madhya Pradesh state government has made a policy to deposit the amount of Rs 600 crore in the form of subsidy in the account of the electricity company itself in lieu of domestic consumers remarked Ahmed.
In his demands to Nitin Raut, Anees demanded to waive of bills up to consumption of 300 units, waive of surcharge levied in the bill amount, scrapping the bill for the month of June and issuing revised bill, and not to severe power supply of people who do not pay the bill. Maharashtra. *
Also powerloom workers managing small powerlooms from their homes across the state had to suffer the most in lockdown as they were out of work must be given relief in the form of waiving of their three months electricity bill.
Anees strongly demanded that Minister may use his good offices and get aid sanction from Central Government which would bring relief to citizens of Maharashtra* .
Nitin Raut gave a patient learning to Anees Ahmed and assured to look into his demands in a positive way.