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Feb 01, 2013 at 06:48pm IST

Delhi govt, private companies cheating people on power bills, alleges Arvind Kejriwal

New Delhi: Aam Aadmi Party convener Arvind Kejriwal on Friday alleged that power tariffs in the national capital were falsely inflated by the Delhi government and the Delhi Electricity Regulatory Commission. Kejriwal also claimed that power companies owned by Tata and Anil Ambani were involved in major frauds.

Kejriwal said that while the distribution losses have come down in Delhi, power tariffs have been increased forcing people to pay a much high price. He demanded that a case of fraud should be lodged against Ambani as his company BSES and its sister concerns have allegedly fudged accounts to show huge losses.

The Aam Aadmi Party convener also accused Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit of stalking an order of the DERC to cut power prices by 23 per cent in 2010. Kejriwal said that in May, 2010 the then DERC chief Berjinder Singh wanted to pass an order to reduce power tariffs but Dikshit asked them to withhold it.

Kejriwal demanded that the power tariffs should be brought down by half and alleged that the new DERC chairman PD Sudhakar was working as an agent of electricity companies. He said that Sudhakar, without conducting an audit, believed companies' claims that there was a sharp rise in distribution losses and raised power tariffs by 22 per cent in 2011 and 32 per cent in 2012. Kejriwal demanded that Sudhakar should be sacked and a new DERC chairperson be appointed.

Elaborating on his allegations against private power companies, he said that companies owned by Anil Ambani fudged distribution cost figures and showed artificial losses. He alleged that Anil Ambani created two energy companies - one bought surplus power from another and sold it back at half the cost. Kejriwal said that private power companies were hiding their revenues and should therefore be audited by the CAG. He demanded that a case of cheating should be filed against power discoms.

Reacting to the allegations levied by Kejriwal, Tata Power Delhi CEO Praveer Sinha said that there was a need to look at the situation in proper perspective. "Our tariffs are lower than neighbouring states," he added.

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