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Gujarat: HC notice over fixed power charges for lockdown period

Gujarat: HC notice over fixed power charges for lockdown period

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The association has filed a petition stating that after the lockdown 1.0, the state government announced waiver of fixed electricity charge for April. However, the lockdown continued later on the central government’s orders

Ahmedabad: The Gujarat high court on Friday issued notice to the state government and its power distribution companies in response to a petition by the Gujarat Re-Rolling Mills Association seeking waiver for the fixed minimum demand of electricity charges for May and June.

The association has filed a petition stating that after the lockdown 1.0, the state government announced waiver of fixed electricity charge for April. However, the lockdown continued later on the central government’s orders. This halted the industrial production across the state.

The association of 50 MSMEs submitted that because the lockdown continued to be in force, business activities could not be resumed. The fixed-demand electricity charges are exorbitant and the industrial units are unable to bear the cost with work stalled. If these charges are not waived off, the industrial units will be constrained to shut operations resulting in loss of livelihood for more than 10,000 labourers.

The association has approached the court through advocate Arpit Singhvi after the state power companies – the Gujarat Urja Vikas Nigam Ltd and four other distribution companies demanded fixed minimum demand of electricity charges from the industrial units.

The petitioner association has urged the high court to restrict the power companies from taking coercive steps against its member units including disconnecting their power supply, demanding and levying fixed electricity charges and penalties for May and June.

The HC has posted further hearing on this issue on June 5.

Source: TNN
Anand Gupta Editor - EQ Int'l Media Network
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