Report received from Shri Shailendra Dubey, Chairman, All India Power Engineers Federation (AIPEF)
Points placed before the Chief Minister of Puducherry to stop the process of privatization of Power Department of Puducherry
- What is the rationale for privatization of Puducherry? Puducherry has almost lowest tariff in the country, consumers are satisfied, loss is 11.50 per cent and power department of Puducherry is making profit. So, what is the rationale for privatization?
- Puducherry’s power department is being 100% privatized while 51% privatization has been done in Delhi, Greater Noida, Dadra Nagar Haveli Daman & Diu and Orissa among other places. The process of 100% privatization is unconstitutional. Privatization of profits, anyway what is the rationale?
- For privatization of power utilities, the central government had issued a draft standard bidding document in September 2020, which is still a draft. It is not finalized yet. The question is, on the basis of which document Puducherry is being privatized when the standard bidding document is yet to be finalised. Keep in mind that in the standard bidding document, there is a provision to lease the entire land of the power utility for only ₹ 1. is it fair?
In Chandigarh, it has been decided to give the assets of the Power Department worth Rs.27000 crores to a private company for just Rs.871 crores. Will similarly in Puducherry also the assets of the power department of billions of Rs be given to private houses at a throwaway price and is it in the interest of Puducherry and the general public?
- The Electricity (Amendment) Bill 2022 was introduced in the Parliament on 08 August. Parliament has referred it to the Standing Committee on Electricity Affairs. The Standing Committee report is yet to come. This new law of electricity is being made. Why is Puducherry being privatized without waiting for its report. What’s the hurry?
- The draft Electricity (Amendment) Rule 2022 has been issued at the end of August 2022. Which is yet to be finalised.
- The Power Department of Puducherry is a model department in the field of electricity. The biggest question is that without finalizing the Standard Bidding Document, without finalizing the report of the Standing Committee on Electricity (Amendment) Bill 2022, without finalizing the Electricity (Amendment) Rule 2022, what is the hurry that the profit making Puducherry Power Department is being privatized? Is there any corporate pressure?
- Puducherry has an elected government; you are the elected representative of the people. You should not accept the pressure of the central government. The pressure of the people is bigger than the pressure of any government.
Therefore, we request that the process of privatization should be cancelled or at least it should be stopped immediately.
The Chief Minister of Puducherry held talks with the power workers for about one and a half hours after stopping the ongoing cabinet meeting. The Power Minister, Chief Secretary, Power Secretary were present with the Chief Minister during the talks.
Finally, the Chief Minister said that all these facts had not been placed before us till now. Based on these facts, I will write to the Union Home Minister requesting that the process of privatization be reconsidered. Immediately after the talks, the Power Minister made a categorical announcement to the media that the Puducherry Government would demand the Central Government to reconsider the process of privatization in the light of the new facts put forth by the power employees.
At present, the Puducherry Electricity Workers’ Action Committee Samiti has decided to postpone the strike in view of talks with the Chief Minister and after Diwali, the Action Committee will review the agitation again.
Long live the unity of power employees and engineers!
Save Power Sector – Save India!