SIMA Chairman seeks CM's intervention
The new restriction and control measures with too many riders unilaterally announced by the Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Company (TANGEDCO) without the approval of Tamil Nadu Electricity Regulatory Commission (TNERC) have come as a rude shock for all the industrial consumers across the State. Apart from announcing two days power holidays (including Sunday), 40% power cut, four hours evening peak hour restriction and four hours scheduled load shedding (actually is more than six hours), TANDGEDCO has prevented the HT consumers from purchase and use of private power and also use of banked wind energy which are against the Electricity Act 2003 and also the TNERC regulations.
The Madras High Court, after hearing the writ petitions filed by certain consumers, has permitted the purchase and use of third party power/captive power plant power/wind power during the power holidays and load shedding period. TANGEDCO on its own later permitted the use of such power during the evening peak hours. Thus, TANGEDCO has created a total mesh and greatly affected the consumers with the new R & C measures for which it has taken over two months. This is one of the worst ever unrealistic measures taken by the TNEB in its history forcing all the consumers to seek legal remedy.
Normally, the TANGEDCO and Electricity Minister were used to have the meeting with all the major industry Associations in the State or the meeting of the consultative committee before finalising any R & C measures in order to have smooth relationship and cooperation of the consumers. This time TANGEDCO has failed to have such meetings and pushed its unilateral and unworkable decision on the consumers.
As far as the private power purchase and usage is concerned, there is a well laid procedure under open access system as per the Electricity Act 2003. TANGEDCO and SLDC have been following the system very systematically for the last two years. For any consumer willing to purchase and use third party power can get clearance from the SLDC with an agreement with the concerned Superintending Engineers. TANGEDCO already monitors power injected and drawn on line and hence there is no room for any malpractice. Therefore, there is no reason why TANGEDCO should deny purchase and use private power.
In fact, when TNEB introduced the R & C measures during 2008 when the State started facing the power shortage, initially it tried the power holiday though organisations like SIMA objected to it. Since the power holiday could not be implemented, the government then opted for power cut across all industrial consumers.
In a press release issued, Mr S Dinakaran, Chairman, The Southern India Mills Association (SIMA) has appealed to the Hon'ble Chief Minister to immediately intervene, constitute a high power committee directly under the able leadership of Hon'ble Chief Minister to review the systems being followed by TANGEDCO and TANTRANSCO and come out with a comprehensive short, medium and long term strategy to mitigate power crisis, ensure industry-friendly policies and avoid litigations.