Punjab Power engineers seek vertically integrated board with trading out of its preview

Submitted by gagandeep on Tue, 03/03/2009 - 7:23am

Punjab Power engineers seek vertically integrated board with trading out of its preview
Monday, 02 March 2009

CHANDIGARH: All India Power Engineers Federation has demanded that the state electricity boards be kept as a vertically integrated company and only trading part be taken out of its preview to meet the legal requirements of Electricity Act 2003.

Padamjit Singh Chairman of the federation said on Monday that private companies are doing the business in Generation Transmission and distribution in power sector while state electricity boards are being forced to unbundled under the same act. He said as per legal opinion taken by PSEB Engineers Association a state electricity board can continue to function in present form and to meet the law requirement a separate trading company needs to be established. He appreciated the stand taken by Kerala Government in keeping the KSEB as a single company.

According to spokesperson of federation AIPEF in a resolution strongly condemned the new back door method of privatization of power sector by way of franchisee system in urban areas. Uttar Pardesh Government has last week decided to give distribution of power in two major industrial towns on franchisee basis to a private company for a period of 20 years. This is indirect privatization of power sector without any responsibility of the franchisee. The same experiment is also being tried in Maharashtra and Madhya Pardesh.

Padamjit Singh Chairman of federation told that due to financial meltdown the private companies are postponing their commitments of investing in new power plants .There is general distrust and suspicision towards private sector and now there is more trust towards public sector. The private companies are increasing their profits by hook or crook. Citing the example of Delhi he said that Delhi Regulatory Commission in its affidavit before the Appellate Tribunal has said that Reliance companies in Delhi has submitted fake papers to seek higher tariff.

AIPEF in another resolution condemned the DVC management in victimising A K Jain Chief Engineer of the corporation because he dared to expose corruption in high places by seeking information under right of information act. The resolution stressed that the victimization of whistle blower should be stopped immediately. Central Information Commission has backed Jain who was refused information by DVC claiming that information sought is of commercial secrecy. The AIPEF meeting was attended by the delegates of 13 states.

AIPEF also requested the Chhatisgarh Government to expedite the review of unbundling of state electricity board in five companies. The state government has appointed a 10 member committee to review the whole issue.