New home buyers in Karnataka to get 58-59 units of free power, ET RealEstate

June 24, 2023

BENGALURU: Resolving the confusion over providing up to 200 units of power free to citizens who have recently bought or built a house or have shifted to a new property, the energy department on Monday said such residents will also be covered under the ambitious Gruha Jyothi scheme. But these beneficiaries will be entitled to only 53 units plus an additional 10% of power for free.

In the absence of one-year data on average electricity consumption for such citizens, questions were raised about the inclusion of new home buyers and tenants under the programme. Initially, energy minister KJ George had sought time to discuss the issue and arrive at a consensus.

Holding a meeting of energy department finance department officials at Vidhana Soudha on Monday, Geroge said the state government has decided to extend the benefit of 200 units of free power to such category of citizens as well.

“Our (state government) objective was to include as many eligible beneficiaries as possible. When we got to know about the problem of citizens, who may belong to this category, we decided to discuss it with the CM. Later, CM Siddaramaiah decided to extend the benefit to all eligible citizens. Hence, we have decided to include such citizens who may have recently built a house or moved into a new property under the Gruha Jyothi scheme,” George explained after the meeting.

53 units free plus 10% addition

Accommodating this category of citizens under the up to 200 units of free power scheme, the state government has decided to keep the state’s average consumption as the benchmark to arrive at their quantum of free power.

“Out of the 2.16 crore households, as many as 2.14 crore are eligible for this programme as they consume less than 200 units of power monthly. Further, the average annual consumption among these 2.14 crore households is 53 units per month,” explained a senior official from the energy department.

Referring to the 53 units of average annual consumption per month at the state level, George said: “Those who have built or moved into a new property do not have a one-year consumption record. Hence, we have decided to provide them with a monthly average of 53 units for the next one year, along with the 10% additional allocation. This would come to 58-59 units per month. If citizens use more than 58-59 units and remain within 200 units of power, they will have to pay only for the additional usage. However, if they overshoot 200 units, they will have to pay the entire bill amount. After one year, we will assess their monthly average consumption by looking at their year-long consumption.”

Clarifying the substantial increase in the monthly electricity bills in June, George said the government has no role in the estimation of tariff. “Tariff is completely decided and pronounced by Karnataka Electricity Regulatory Commission. Earlier, there used to be 3 to 4 slabs and now the same has been reduced to two. We are also discussing if we can go back to the earlier four-slab system. If possible, we are even ready to go back to the earlier system of tariff,” the minister clarified.

  • Published On Jun 13, 2023 at 06:00 PM IST

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