Thiruvananthapuram: Residents of Kerala to face more financial strain as the Kerala State Electricity Board (KSEB) announced that it will continue to impose a surcharge in the coming month of October. This move is aimed at offsetting the losses incurred due to the purchase of excess electricity.
The surcharge will amount to 19 paise per unit, comprises 10 paise fixed by KSEB and an additional 9 paise mandated by the Electricity Regulatory Commission. This decision comes in the wake of KSEB’s substantial extra expenditure in August, totaling Rs 41.57 crore, as a result of procuring additional electricity. To cover this significant cost, at least 37 paise per unit should be collected. However, the law permits only the collection of 10 paise per month; any additional charges must be approved by the Regulatory Commission, leading to the current surcharge of 19 paise.
This surcharge is likely to be further exacerbated as tariff revisions are expected to be implemented in the coming week, potentially resulting in a substantial increase in electricity bills for consumers.
Yesterday, the Electricity Regulatory Commission made a statement blaming KSEB for the ongoing power crisis in the state. The Commission has taken the drastic step of cancelling long-term contracts for the purchase of electricity at lower prices. According to the Commission’s findings, this decision was influenced by the power crisis, forcing KSEB to buy electricity from external sources at exorbitant rates without pre-existing contracts. As per the report, the additional daily cost incurred by this situation ranges from 8 to 14 crores, exacerbating the financial woes of the state’s power distribution company and, ultimately, its consumers.