Making UDAY 2.0 deliver: State electricity boards and states must face large penalties to learn lesson


Making UDAY 2.0 deliver: State electricity boards and states must face large penalties to learn lesson

Even when it first began, the UDAY scheme to turnaround stressed state electricity boards (SEBs) looked too ambitious; while the plan envisaged tariff hikes, these were to be kept to a minimum since the fulcrum around which UDAY worked was a sharp fall in ATC losses, to 15% by March 2019.

As it happens, the latest data, puts this at 22% and it is much higher in states like Bihar (38.9%), Uttar Pradesh (33.1%) and Jharkhand (36.9%). How poorly UDAY has done can be gauged from an interview power minister RK Singh has given Business Standard where he has said UDAY focused on reducing the debt burden of SEBs—under the scheme, bank debt at 13-14% was replaced by 8%-interest state government bonds—while UDAY-II will focus on loss-reduction by using prepaid meters, special police stations to catch electricity thieves, etc. Read More

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