Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Friday said the notion that people of the state had got “inflated” electricity bills was incorrect. Speaking to reporters, Thackeray said consumers got “three months average bill as per unit use” instead of a monthly one, since meter reading was not possible during the lockdown, and “so it looked inflated”.
“We have asked for meter checks,” Thackeray added. He also said there was no miscommunication on the power bill issue among his allies and ministers and any talk on this front was incorrect.
Thackeray’s clarification came after he was queried on statements made by state energy minister Nitin Raut and senior Congress leader and PWD minister Ashok Chavan which sounded discordant. Chavan reportedly said Raut should have discussed the issue of power bill waiver before making an announcement on it.
On Friday, Raut said he has spoken on bills waiver as meetings on this issue were held with the chief minister and deputy chief minister Ajit Pawar, who is also finance minister, and Chavan may not have not known about this as he was getting treated for COVID-19 at the time. Speaking to reporters in Nagpur during the day, Raut also said the media was briefed about the bill waiver on the instructions of the deputy CM.
State Congress chief and minister Balasaheb Thorat also countered Chavan and said the (bill waiver) issue was discussed and the latter may not have been aware of it. The opposition, led by the BJP, has been protesting against the MVA government and burning bill copies demanding that it keep its “promise” of bill waiver.