Trivandrum: The Government of Kerala’s decision to agree to the Kerala State Electricity Board (KSEB) proposal for a power restriction of 20% on HT & EHT customers has been termed as irrational and unfavourable by the Industries in the State. There is a widespread demand for revoking this proposal of power restrictions as this will deal a severe blow to many of the Industries who are already reeling under the high tariff rates and unfavourable business environment.
In his statement, V K Mathews, Chairman, CII Kerala & Executive Chairman, The IBS Group believes that the current power restrictions will have a dampening impact on the Industries and will in turn hamper growth and expansion plans here. He also opined that with the upcoming ‘Emerging Kerala 2012’, which has been projected to attract investments to the State, such power restrictions will send a wrong signal to potential investors. He also urged KSEB to develop strategies and tactics to manage available power resources in a more efficient manner.
The Industrial Sector in the State is of the opinion that the current situation of Electricity Shortage in the State is definitely a manageable one without resorting to Power Restrictions. According to Umang Patodia, Chairman, Taskforce on Power, CII Kerala, “Higher energy and demand requirement during March is usual. The daily energy consumption which peaked during the time of the SSLC & Plus 2 Exams has gone down considerably. This requirement is very likely to come down further in the coming days”.
CII believes that with some financial support from the Government of Kerala, KSEB would be able to tide over the present crisis by drawl of power from underutilized power stations. Another important factor to be noticed in this regard is that the quantum of Power restriction requested by KSEB has increased from 15% to 20 %. This will make the hardships on the Industries even severer. The actual restriction on the Consumers will be 25% – 30% considering the fact that the energy quota is fixed based on average consumption for the previous one year. The additional burden on the large industries due to the proposed power restriction would be between 1.5 Crores to 3.0 Crores per month. Needless to say, this is not affordable to any of the Large Industries and will for sure announce Curtains on Small-Medium scale Industries.
CII opines that if at all, the Government has to impose a restriction; it has to be limited to 5% for April & May 2012 only. This will be the most optimum solution for the issue, favouring the Industrial sector in the State as well as reducing the power requirement for KSEB.
Since April 02, 2012 KSEB has imposed a daily load shedding of half an hour during the peak hours for all users across the State. KSEB has not spared the IT hubs in the State – Technopark, Trivandrum and Infopark, Kochi. Both the IT parks have adequate power back-up arrangements but it’s the Small and Medium Enterprise (SMEs) outside the parks who are hit most, due to the scheduled and unscheduled cuts.
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