6 times city saturday, july 4, 2015 white paper gupta, mla from rohini and leader of opposition,...

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    New Delhi: Delhi govern-ments initiative to bringtransparency into Delhis pow-er sector, a white paper, hascalled for removal of the pre-sent chairperson and mem-bers of the Delhi ElectricityRegulatory Commission(DERC). The white paper com-missioned by the governmentto examine the power situationin Delhi prior to the AAP gov-ernment alleges that the DERCchairperson and membersfailed to protect consumer in-terest which constitutes mis-conduct under the ElectricityAct. The white paper also saysthat the government failed tokeep a check on the discomsexpenditure or high powerpurchase costs.

    Earlier this year, the AAPgovernment had decided to

    bring out the white paper un-der a one-time committee,headed by former DERC chair-person Berjinder Singh. Whilethe report is not yet final, it hasbeen submitted to the govern-ment for scrutiny. Sources inthe government indicated itwas yet to be discussed follow-ing which an action taken re-port would be formed. Prema-ture findings of the report saythat there should have been acase for reduction in electrici-ty tariff during the years 2011to 2013 as nearly 80% of cost ofdistribution of electricity ispower purchase cost.

    The white paper states thatfollowing numerous billing-re-lated complaints, the Delhigovernment had asked DERCwhether the billing software ofdiscoms had been checked byan expert from the body. DERCrefused to reply, saying that it is

    a quasi-judicial autonomousstatutory body. Refusal ofDERC to give a reply on meritsclearly shows that before or-dering hefty increases in tariffand creating a large regulatoryasset which had the effect ofvirtually more than doublingthe tariff from 2011 to 2013, itdid not verify genuineness ofthe costly purchases of short-

    term power by the discomswhich were prima facie at pric-es much higher than marketprices, the report says.

    Singh's report also saysthat from financial year 2011onwards, the average yearlyrates of short-term electricitypurchased by the discoms havebeen consistently much high-er, often by more than 50% ascompared to the average yearlyrate of electricity sold in the In-dian Energy Exchange.

    The committee has con-cluded that it is under consid-eration of the government ofNCT of Delhi as to whether theserious omissions on thepart of DERC which resultedin its failure to protect consum-er interest and calls for actionfor removal of the Chairmanand members who were partyto the tariff orders passed in2011 to 2013.

    Says Commission Failed To Protect Consumer Interest


    White paper attacks DERC

    New Delhi: Defending chiefminister Arvind Kejriwalsexorbitant electricity bill forthe month of June, power min-ister Satyendar Jain on Fridaysaid that his connection isused for official purposes. Hesuggested checking of powerbills of MPs to see their usagefor office-related work andhow many had commercialconnections.

    You may think the bill isvery high, but go to the CMshouse and see how many peo-ple visit him every day andhow many air-conditionershave been installed. He lives inaroom without an AC. You aretalking about the area wherehe meets the public. Tomor-row you will say my officespower bill is too high. If you

    look at NDMC areas, there areabout 400 MPs living there andrunning offices in theirhouses where scores of peoplemeet them. Even they shouldchange their meters to com-mercial connections, saidJain.

    The electricity meter in-stalled at Kejriwals residenceis a domestic connection, butused for official work. Power

    sector officials suggested itshould be a commercial con-nection. This would lead tohigher bills, as commercialtariffs are almost double of do-mestic tariffs. Sources said Ta-ta Power Delhi was planningto send a notice to the CMs res-idence to change the connec-tion to commercial and chargesuch tariffs with retrospectiveeffect from April.

    Meanwhile, Congress andBJP have both accused theAAP government of wastingpublic money for personalcomfort. AAP members hadsaid they will not indulge inluxury and live like commonmen. What are they doingnow? asked DPCC presidentAjay Maken. BJP leader Vijen-der Gupta also attacked theCM. People dont know the re-al face of AAP, he said.


    Electricity bill official, CMdoesnt even have AC: Jain

    New Delhi: Arvind Kejri-wal-headed Aam Aadmi Par-ty government on Friday de-fended in the Supreme Courtits decision to issue a circularthreatening to initiate crimi-nal defamation proceedingsagainst people, includingmedia, for insinuationsagainst the chief ministerand government officials.

    But unsure of the circu-lars legal sanctity at a timewhen Kejriwal himself hadmoved the SC challenging theconstitutional validity ofcriminal defamation, theDelhi government left it tothe courts wisdom and saidthe circular would be with-drawn if the courts foundfault with it.

    In the event the SC is ofthe view that the circular iscontrary to law or otherwiseunnecessary, the govern-

    ment re-spectfullysubmitsthat thesame willbe with-drawn,the Delhigovern-ments af-

    fidavit said.The Delhi government

    had issued a circular on May6 asking all its officials tolodge a complaint with theprincipal secretary (home) ifthey come across any newsarticle which damages thereputation of the chief min-ister or any other minister orthe government.

    It was stayed by the SC onMay 14 when the court alsoasked how the governmentissued such a circular whenthe CM had himself filed apetition seeking scrapping ofthe criminal defamation law.On one hand, he claims tosuffer but, on the other hand,intends to pursue cases ofcriminal defamation againstothers. His governmentshould explain why such acircular was issued, thecourt had asked the AAP government.

    In an affidavit, the citygovernment said, Our mo-tive was not to encouragecases of defamation but toprovide adequate safeguardsto prevent its misuse.

    If SC says,defamationorder will bewithdrawn

    New Delhi: AAP MLAs on Friday metchief minister Arvind Kejriwal to askfor a pay hike on the lines of MPs seekinga raise of 100% in their salaries. A dele-gation of 20-odd legislators met the CMin the morning and said that either theirsalaries are increased or they be provid-ed with financial assistance for settingup offices in their constituencies. Kejri-wal reportedly said he would look intothe matter.

    Our monthly salary is Rs 53,500 ofwhich Rs 12,000 is the basic. In additionto this, each MLA is given Rs 30,000 as re-imbursement for two data entry oper-ators. We are not entitled to fuel, phone,water, electricity or ration. This sum isdifficult to manage with. Just renting of-fice space costs Rs 15,000-Rs 20,000. Weare left with nothing to meet personal ex-penses, said an MLA.

    Salaries of MLAs were last raised in2011, which was Rs 32,000 then.

    Meanwhile, BJP slammed the movesaying that AAP is only looking at waysto raise taxes and waste public funds. OPSharma, MLA from Vishwas Nagar, saidthat AAP MLAs should realize that arehere to serve the public.

    Vijender Gupta, MLA from Rohiniand leader of Opposition, said that theparty had already wasted money on ad-vertisements, 21 parliamentary secre-taries, etc. This is just a gimmick. Theparty has set them up to ask for this raisebecause they want to keep their MLAshappy, he said.

    AAP MLAsseek pay hikefrom Kejriwal



    Arvind Kejriwal



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