NAGPUR/MUMBAI: Amid complaints of inflated electricity bills in Maharashtra, State Energy Minister Nitin Raut on Monday hinted at a likely relief.Speaking to mediapersons, Raut said the government is planning a “Diwali bonanza” to provide relief to the consumers. Discussions related to the likely waiver have been held with Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray by his department, Raut added.
“Electricity is important and people’s livelihoods have not completely returned. Financial conditions are not good. Keeping the same in mind we are planning a Diwali bonanza,” NDTV reported the senior Congress leader as saying.
“My department has already moved the file and it has gone to the Finance Minister, but Ajit dada (Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar, who handles that ministry) is currently unwell. He will take a look at it soon and we are following it up,” Raut added.
Ajit Pawar is recovering from a COVID-19 infection and was discharged from the hospital today itself.
The Power Ministry of the Maha Vikas Aghadi government had come under flak after the imposition of lockdown as several consumers received “inflated bills”. The average tariff calculation method was considered as reason behind the hiked bills, as regular meter readings were suspended during the two months when total lockdown was imposed.
Raut, while not referring to the technicalities that led to the alleged inflation in electricity bills, said the government is committed to provide relief to consumers as a time when the COVID-19 pandemic has hit livelihoods and battered savings of most households.
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had last year rolled out a free electricity scheme, under which households using up to 200 units in a month need not pay.