Congress attacks government over Gujarat move to give relief to power companies

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New Delhi, Aug 22 (IANS) The Congress on Wednesday attacked the Modi government over Gujarat government’s move to set up a commission to give relief to power companies, saying it will burden the people and was in violation of a Supreme Court verdict.

“Prime Minister Narendra Modi claims he doesn’t fear to be seen with industrialists because he is honest. But we have seen many instances of his crony capitalism,” said senior Congress leader Jairam Ramesh while addressing a press conference.

He said in February 2007, the Gujarat Urja Vikas Nigam Limited (GUVNL) signed a PPA (Power Purchase Agreement) for 4850 MW power from three companies.

He said the agreement stated that the three companies would provide power to Gujarat, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Punjab and Haryana.

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Ramesh said according to the agreement, the price of electricity should range between Rs 2.40 to Rs 2.80 per unit.

“The electricity production began in 2007. And five years later, in 2012, these companies requested for increase in price and refused to produce it on the agreed price,” the Congress leader said.

The companies, he said, stated that they cannot provide electricity at the agreed prices and gave an application.

“The matter was debated for over five years at different levels in the state and at Centre. And then the matter finally reached Supreme Court, which in its April 11, 2017 verdict said that the companies’ request does not hold any validity,” he said.

“After the verdict, the Gujarat government issues a notification on July 3, 2018, stating that it would form a three-member commission on the directions of the Central government and sought suggestion on how to provide relief to the three companies,” he said.

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“This notification is in direct violation of the Supreme Court verdict. The Central and Gujarat governments should be held for contempt of court,” he said.

He also said that if the three-member commission suggests giving relief to these companies, then it would be a burden upon five states that are purchasing electricity from Gujarat.



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