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Posted at: Feb 4, 2018, 2:00 AM; last updated: Feb 4, 2018, 2:00 AM (IST)

Engineers oppose Electricity (Amendment) Bill, plan rally

Call for demonstration in Delhi on April 3 with other power staff

Tribune News Service

Patiala, February 3

The All-India Power Engineers’ Federation (AIPEF), along with power sector employees, has planned a massive rally at Delhi on April 3 against the Electricity (Amendment) Bill, 2014. 

Shaliendra Dubey, AIPEF Chairman, said all state constituents would hold conventions by February 28, followed by massive demonstrations at state capitals on March 14, through which resolutions against the Bill will be passed and sent to the Prime Minister, Union Power Minister, and various chief ministers. 

A massive rally at Delhi on April 3 against the Electricity (Amendment) Bill, 2014, has also been planned. In the meantime, if the Centre takes step to rush through the Bill in the Parliament, then 25 lakh power employees and engineers will  resort to one-day lightning strike.

VK Gupta, spokesperson for the AIPEF, said under the proposed amendments, the financial condition of incumbent state licensee as well as the government-owned intermediary company would become unsustainable from the very beginning and the purpose of the Bill will be defeated. He demanded that the government should conduct a detailed study on the aftermath of the implementation of the Electricity Act, 2003.

“The latest move of the government to separate carriage from the content of electricity is a copy of a British practice, while the conditions in India are different. The transmission and distribution losses are high, most of the discoms are facing acute financial losses and reeling under loans,” he said. 

The state-owned distribution companies have already borne losses of more than Rs 3.8 lakh crore because they have no control over the cost of generation. The ultimate losers are the government and the consumers in this game.

This Bill would further deepen the financial crisis. Besides creating problems for the power sector, the stressed assets are threatening the health of banks and financial institutions such as the Power Finance Corporation and Rural Electrification Corporation, he said. 

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