CHANDIGARH, June 19: Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee President Capt Amarinder Singh today asked as why was industrial power tariff highest in Punjab as compared to other states in the country. Not only was the tariff highest, he said, but the state had failed to provide adequate power to the industry which was one of the main reasons that industry was running away from here.
In a statement issued here today, Capt Amarinder said, contrary to its claims of making Punjab power surplus, the Akali-BJP government had not only failed in fulfilling the demands but was also charging the highest tariff in the country. “Under such situation how can you expect the industry to come and invest here?” he asked, while pointing out, even the existing industry was moving out.He pointed out, due to the extra duty and octroi imposed on power by the Akali-BJP government the industrial power tariff per unit in Punjab was Rs 5.28. While in other states like Haryana it was Rs 4.72 per unit, Rs 3.61 in Himachal Pradesh, Uttrakhand Rs 3.65, Maharashtra Rs 4.96 and Karnataka Rs 4.65 only.
The PCC President said, Gujarat was the only state where the power tariff was higher than Punjab at Rs 5.65 per unit. But, he pointed out, since there were no power cuts in Gujarat and the industry did not need to generate captive power, it turns out to be less than Punjab as due to frequent cuts the industry has to generate its own power with high input costs. He said, since generating captive power leads to additional costs the overall expenditure on power comes to more than that in Gujarat.
The former Chief Minister also ridiculed the claims of the Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Badal of setting up power plants for additional generation. He said, of the five power projects Sukhbir was crying hoarse about, three were started during the Congress government only.
Capt Amarinder said, Talwandi Sabo, Govindal Sahib and Rajpura plants were launched during his (Capt Amarinder’s) tenure only and Sukhbir was trying to claim the credit, while on the rest they had not made any progress.