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Bengaluru power supply firm seeks tariff hike

New proposal limits slabs from 6 to 4
The Bangalore Electricity Supply Company (Bescom), which caters to eight districts, including Bengaluru Urban and Rural, has sought a Rs. 1/unit hike in tariff for the financial year 2019-20.
Bescom sources said the hike is to cover the gap in revenue incurred during power purchase. The power utility had asked for an 82 paise hike last year, which was the least sought by the five electricity supply companies.
Bescom has also proposed a ‘non-telescopic’ tariff, wherein the number of slabs for LT2 a (i) (low tension) consumers, i.e., domestic consumers, has been reduced.
“The HT (high tension) and commercial/temporary tariff consumers are cross-subsidising the domestic consumers. We have now proposed to segregate the domestic consumers based on consumption for intra-cross subsidisation,” explained an official. Two years ago, the power utility had introduced more slabs, according to which, consumers had to pay more as they crossed each slab. However, the new tariff proposal limits the number of slabs from six to four.
For example, consumers had to earlier pay Rs. 3.5 a unit if their consumption was less than 30 units, and Rs. 4.95 for consumption between 31 and 100 units. Under the new proposal, those who consume below 50 units will have to pay Rs. 3.90, while those who consume more than 50 units, but less than 100 units, will have to pay Rs. 4.95 for all units from 1 to 100, officials explained.
Bescom’s tariff petition has also included the proposal of bringing in ‘new businesses’ under the commercial category. “There are these vending kiosks in tie-up with an online grocery store, wherein people can make purchases via an app and take items from a refrigerator. Those that were installed at offices and malls were under the commercial category. But the ones that were installed within apartment premises, at club houses and sports areas, were being considered under the domestic category, though it is a commercial activity,” Bescom officials said.