Mumbai, Feb 3 IANS | 9 months ago

All India Congress Committee general secretary Gurudas Kamat Monday urged Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan to allow "open access", which can enable Mumbaikars to select an electricity provider of their choice.

In a letter to Chavan and the regulator -- Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Commission (MERC), Kamat said the Electricity Act, 2003 permits "open access", giving a choice to the consumers to select any electricity provider offering better service or rates.

This is to address the anxiety and concerns of the citizens of Mumbai over the regular hikes in electricity rates by the private electricity providers and should be made available uniformly to all Mumbaikars, said Kamat, who is the MP from Mumbai North-West.

Citing an example, he said the Tata Electricity Company charges nearly Rs.2 per unit less than the other electricity provider (Reliance Energy) for consumption of 300 units.

Accordingly, he requested Chavan to allow all consumers whose electricity consumption is up to 300 units to change over to Tata Electric Company (TEC).

The TEC must also be directed to provide the services to the people of Mumbai wanting a change, he said.

He said this shifting could benefit over two million households besides enjoying other subsidies and withdrawal of taxes, which may be considered by the government and MERC.

Kamat is the third Mumbai Congress MP to make a similar demand after MPs from Mumbai North Sanjay Nirupam and Mumbai North-Central Priya Dutt.

Nirupam had gone on an indefinite hunger strike demanding concession in electricity rates and called it off after four days following the state government's assurance to do the needful.

(Posted on 04-02-2014)

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