Sunday, 31 March 2013

Vijay Goel raises serious questions over the efficiency of DERC.

New Delhi, 30th March.  After the gherao of Delhi Electricity Regulatory Commission by the BJP followed by 2 hours long meeting with the Chairman of DERC P.D. Sudhakar and other Members Shyam Vadhera, J.P. Singh, Jaisri Raghuraman, Anjali Chandra in a Press Conference today, the BJP Delhi Pradesh President Vijay Goel, Shri Anil Sood and Rajiv Kakadiya of ‘Chetna’ and RWA representative Shri Saurabh Gandhi have said that it is beyond doubt that the DERC and Discoms are acting at the behest of Delhi Government.  

Shri Goel said that the license of these power companies can be cancelled for violation of the conditions of license but the DERC have never served any notice to them.

DERC has admitted that according to the terms of agreement all the three companies had rights for distribution of power in entire Delhi so that there may be competition and power may be supplied at cheap rates like the mobile service.  But the reply of the commission was that since these companies are purchasing power from one source and at one rate and are allowed to sell at uniformed rate, hence it was not needed.  This statement of DERC is contrary to the Central Electricity Act, 2003, National Tariff Policy, 2005 and National Electricity Policy, 2005. There is provision for competition in these policies.

Shri Goel has raised a question that the power companies show profit in their Balance Sheet which is submitted to Power Finance Corporation and the Balance Sheet which is submitted to the Commission shows loss by the companies.  How the commission accepts such Balance Sheets? The Commission has replied that they do not know about it and shall inform us after enquiry.  Shri Goel said that when you get the audited account then your reply is not proper.  Even after that the Commission told that they shall enquire about it.  Anil Sood, Rajiv Kakadiya and Saurabh Gandhi told that the entire data has been submitted before the Commission under protest during the public hearing by DERC and it has no mention in any of the orders of the Commission. It shows that there is connivance between the Commission and Power Companies.

DERC Chairman has said that this experiment failed in Mumbai, whereas the reality is that many consumers have shifted to other power companies and are getting better service of higher quality.  After the submission of BJP delegation, the Chairman accepted the demand that he will study the Mumbai model and after that consider implementing in Delhi.

Commission has admitted its mistakes that they appointed the statutory auditor of power companies, Price Water House Cooper as their consultant whereas the same consultant is also with Reliance Infra. After being asked how it happened and what action was taken, the Commission replied that they are enquiring about it.  The reality is that the aforesaid consultant is still with them. How much amount they have been paid should be stated by the Commission and when they shall be removed?  

Commission admitted that the accounts of the power companies were so much lengthy that they had to seek the help of Institute of Chartered Accountants but the institute refused to help.  

  When Shri Goel asks who examines such lengthy accounts then they replied that the Forum of regulator has prepared a formula of keeping accounts and it is followed by them. But it was found that there is no system on the website of the Forum of regulator.

Chairman said that the loss shown by the power companies and the demand made according to that has been reduced by about 100 crores. Shri Goel asked what punishment has been given to these companies for submission of fudged accounts and to which hundred crore rupees had to be cut. This did not happen only once. Every year the companies exaggerate their expenditure and the Commission cuts the amount and even after that the power companies go for appeal to the APTEL and get decision in their favor after cancelling our order.  Why the DERC does not challenge it in effective way?

Shri Goel asked that the two power companies BYPL and BRPL have not submitted their statement of movable and immovable properties which have been studied by the committee appointed by DERC. What action has been taken by the DERC against both power companies? The Chairman P.D. Sudhakar replied that action will be taken during the true-up exercise of the power companies. (True-up: the power companies submit their estimated expenditure five years in advance and after five years it is tallied with actual expenditure). It is interesting that the true-up exercise has not been undertaken. 

Shri Goel said that the power tariff in Delhi has increased by 59 percent during the last two years whereas in Gujarat it increased by 6 percent only. What is the reason when all the power distribution companies purchase power from one source and the companies get cheaper power on long term PPA. In reply, the Chairman told that due to hike in the price of Coal, the cost of the product supplied by power companies in Delhi had to be increased.  In reply, Shri Goel told that will the Commission show the long term PPA signed by power companies so that this may be verified. The Chairman promised that he will provide the copy but we have not received as yet.  

The power companies had installed Common Neutrals in the meters of the consumers living in flats, which is illegal. Shri Goel asked what action you have taken against the companies. The Commission replied that we have instructed the power companies about it. Again Shri Goel asked, have the power companies complied with the directions? Will the Commission inform us?  The Commission promised to inform.

Shri Goel further asked what action has been taken by the Commission on the data supplied on power theft, transformer wise by the power companies.  The Commission replied that they don’t have any knowledge about it. Then Shri Anil Sood presented a reply under RTI before the Commission and said that when the power theft is 65 to 99 percent then why the power companies are supplying power? The Commission replied that we give a target for curbing power theft and if that target is not achieved we take action against power companies. There are many transformers which show negative loss and the Commission was asked to reply how the negative loss was shown and what action was taken by the Commission? The commission replied that they don’t have knowledge about it. This is a clear lie because the data was given to Shri Anil Sood by the Commission itself.

Shri Goel asked that what action has been taken by the Commission against the power companies till date? The Commission replied that we shall inform you about it. 

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