Kashmir civil society opposes proposed power tariff hike

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Srinagar: Kashmir Centre for Social and Development Studies (KCSDS), a civil society group, has strongly opposed the proposed power tariff hike in the territory.

The KCSDS in a petition submitted to the Electricity Regulatory Commission of the territory called for increase in power tariffs for Indian army and other paramilitary forces. It said that general consumers could not be burdened for “failure” of the authorities to reduce the Transmission and Distribution losses.

The KCSDS member, Shakeel Qalander, who made a presentation before the Commission said that Indian government’s departments including defense and paramilitary establishments were exempted from payment of electricity duty which was otherwise charged from a poor common consumer and the Commission, should hike their tariff to cover such losses.

He said that the civil society group requested the Commission to charge Telecom companies for supply of electricity at par with government departments. He asked why should telecom companies that earned over Rs 40 crore a day for providing erratic services to the consumers in occupied Kashmir be provided electricity at subsidized rates? “No benefit of such facility is passed on by them to the consumers,” he added.

The KCSDS is demanding return of the power projects illegally and unconstitutionally controlled by the Indian National Hydroelectric Power Corporation to Jammu and Kashmir. (PTK)

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