Kozhikode: The Kerala State Electricity Board (KSEB) has begun levying 9 paise per unit as surcharge on electricity bills to recover the additional expenses incurred during power purchases. However, domestic consumers with connected load of and below 1,000 watt and monthly consumption of and below 40 units, are exempted from paying the surcharge.
On account of the severe coal crisis in the country, electricity had to be generated using expensive imported coal. As a result, the price of the power generated at the plants also soared. With this, Kerala had to spend additional amounts to purchase power from April to June 2022. The current surcharge aims to recover this additional expenditure.
Earlier, KSEB had sought permission from the Kerala State Electricity Regulatory Commission to impose surcharges. Following which, the commission ordered the board to collect a fuel surcharge of 9 paise on electricity bills for four months from February 1 to May 31.
The commission also gave approval to levy surcharges from all categories of consumers until the additional expense of Rs 87.07 crore was fully recovered by the board. This also applies to consumers of non-distribution licensees in the state.
Owing to summer, electricity usage is quite high in Kerala. Hence, the move is likely to double the burden on the consumers.