Hyderabad: Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao on Monday claimed that it is Andhra Pradesh which owes Rs 17,828 crore towards electricity dues to Telangana.
On the Centre’s direction to Telangana to pay over Rs 6,000 crore dues to Andhra Pradesh, he demanded the Centre make Andhra Pradesh pay his state the remaining dues.
KCR told the Assembly that the power dues from Telangana were only Rs 3,000 crore but the Centre has asked it to pay another Rs 3,000 crore towards interest. The Centre has also stated that if the dues were not cleared in a month, action would be taken.
He argued that the dues receivable by Telangana distribution companies (discoms) from Andhra Pradesh are over Rs 17,000 crore, and the Centre should ask Andhra Pradesh pay remaining dues after adjusting Rs 6,000 crore dues as claimed by it.
The Chief Minister questioned the silence of the Centre over Telangana’s request to order Andhra Pradesh to pay power dues.
The Power Ministry on August 30 directed the power distribution companies (discoms) of Telangana to pay the dues of Rs 6,757 crore to the Andhra Pradesh Generation Corporation (APGenco) within 30 days.
Citing the provisions C(2) and (7) of the AP Reorganisation Act, 2014, the Power Ministry stated that there was no dispute regarding the amount to be paid for the power dues – the principal amount of Rs 3,441.78 crore and late payment surcharge of Rs 3,315.14 crore up to July 31, 2022 – to be paid in addition to the principal amount as per the applicable provisions.
Telangana’s Energy Minister G. Jagadish Reddy has already announced that the state will wage a legal battle against the Centre’s direction.
Terming the Centre’s order as “absurd” and “politically motivated”, Jagadish Reddy said this was an act of vengeance against Telangana. He alleged that the Centre was conspiring to create a situation of power cuts in Telangana.
KCR told the Assembly that per capita power consumption in Telangana is 1,250 units against the national average of 957 units. He said power capita consumption in India is less compared to even smaller countries.
He alleged that the BJP government is misleading the country with wrong statistics about power consumption, and that the Centre is working to hand over the electricity sector to big corporates.
KCR also threw the challenge that if the statistics he has given about electricity are proved to be wrong, he would immediately resign.
The Chief Minister said the power situation in Telangana would improve further with the completion of Yadadri power plant.