Representative Image | Photo: Mathrubhumi
Thiruvananthapuram: The electricity board issued a notification on the very next day, after receiving the approval from the regulatory commission, to levy a surcharge of 10 paise on consumers. Until now, the surcharge was collected once every 3 months.
It should be noted that, earlier, surcharge was not levied on consumers in Kerala every month. However, the central electricity regulatory commission amended the rules allowing boards to levy surcharges prior to its approval every month, for covering the excess expenses of the distribution agencies. As a result, electricity rates now keep fluctuating, similar to the fuel rates. Taking cue from the center, state commissions have issued a similar order.
However, a surcharge of above 10 paise, will need clearance from the regulatory commission. The rule was mentioned in the official gazette. The electricity board issued an order levying a 10 paise surcharge on Wednesday.
The move is expected to help recover an excess expenditure of Rs 26.55 crores incurred by the board.
The regulatory commission has also instructed the board to collect 9 paise surcharge per month, for six months in 2022.
It is said that the electricity board had actually proposed a surcharge of 21 paise per month, but the regulatory commission was quick to interfere to bring it down to 10 paise. However, an increase in surcharge is expected in an upcoming review by the commission in October.
But, there is a possibility for the surcharge to come down, as the excess expenditures of the board are going down.