Thursday, March 31, 2011

894 cr power arrears due from Govt Deptts

Though Government is leaving no stone unturned to recover power dues from the common consumers of the electricity across the State yet the power arrears due from its various Departments, Corporations and Statutory Bodies have gone up to whopping Rs 894 crore and no mechanism has been worked out to clear this liability and prevent piling of arrears in future. Official figures provided in the Legislative Assembly by the Chief Minister, Omar Abdullah, who is also the Minister Incharge Power, revealed that power arrears to the tune of Rs 894 crore are due from the Government departments, Corporations and Statutory Bodies till ending February, 2011.

Of this whopping amount, Rs 311.58 crore arrears are outstanding against Government departments, Public Sector Undertakings, Army and other security forces in Kashmir valley and Rs 567.79 crore arrears are due from Government departments in Jammu region.

In Jammu division, Public Health Engineering Department is on the top of list of defaulting departments with its power arrears at Rs 315.41 crore followed by Relief Department, whose power arrears have been calculated at Rs 84.01 crore.

The Lift Irrigation, which is having Rs 44.93 crore outstanding against the Power Development Department, is the third major defaulter followed by the Municipal Committees, Notified Area Committees and Town Area Committees, which together have to pay Rs 41.22 crore arrears to the Power Development Department.

Among the Departments, which have more than Rs 10 crore outstanding against them as arrears include Medical Education Department (Rs 17.91 crore) and Estates Department (Rs 11.34 crore) while as the Department whose arrears are over Rs one crore include Police Department (Rs 6.24 crore), Education Department (Rs 8.28 crore), Director General Prisons (Rs 2.23 crore), Agriculture (Rs 2.59 crore), Forests (Rs 2.32 crore), Excise and Taxation (Rs 1.36 crore), Revenue Department Rs 2.47 crore), Rural Development Department (Rs 1.17 crore), Tourism (Rs 1.62 crore), Animal Husbandry (Rs 2.87 crore), Judicial (Rs 1.8 crore), JDA/UDA (Rs 2.48 crore) and Floriculture (Rs 2.19 crore).

Interestingly, Power Development Department is also in the list of defaulting departments with its arrears having been worked out at Rs 1.58 crore.

In Kashmir Division, Irrigation and Flood Control Department is on the top of list with its arrears having been piled up to Rs 173 crore followed by Public Health Engineering Department with Rs 28.54 crore arrears. The Health Department is at third place in the list of such departments with its arrears at Rs 21.13 crore.

The power arrears due from Army/ BSF and other security forces have been worked out at Rs 7.9 crore arrears, Hospitality and Protocol (Rs 13.74 crore arrears), Police Department (Rs 9.85 crore), Revenue Department (Rs 3.13 crore) and Tourism (Rs 2.94 crore) etc.

Notwithstanding such huge power arrears due from different departments, no mechanism has so far been evolved by the Government to clear the same once for all and ensure regular charging of power tariff from the Departments, Corporations and Statutory Bodies like common consumers.

What to talk of Government departments, even arrears are pending against the houses occupied by the Ministers from time to time despite the fact that a total of 1917364 KWH electricity was consumed in their bungalows till December 2010 during the current financial year.

Though 66742 connections, mostly of common masses were metered till ending December 2010 during the current financial year yet the Power Development Department didn’t pay any attention towards the bungalows of Ministers, which have not been fully metered so far thereby indicating that Power Development Department is only interested in metering the connections of common masses and realizing tariff from them by all possible means.

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