Raising the issue of imposition of water cess on electricity by some states despite it being declared illegal by the Union Government, Punjab Power Minister Harbhajan Singh ETO has said that the states like Punjab are being forced to purchase electricity at higher rates due to imposition of this irrational cess.
Speaking on the concluding day of two days Conference of Power and New and Renewable Energy Ministers at Pragati Maidan, New Delhi today, Punjab Power Minister said that though the Union Power Ministry had conveyed to the states several times that the imposition of Water Cess was illegal but some states like Himachal Pradesh, Uttrakhand, Sikkim , Jammu & Kashmir etc were levying this water cess leaving the state like Punjab with no other option but to pay higher rates on purchase of electricity from such states.
He sought strict action from the Union Government against such illegal practices of these states so that the Purchasing states would get relief from overpriced rates.
Supporting this issue raised by Punjab Cabinet Minister, the Union Minister for Power and Renewable Energy R. K.Singh said that the Ministry has already made it very clear that this imposition is totally unconstitutional and will make sure to stop this practice. He further said that the Union Power Ministry will also support the purchasing states in the course of law against this imposition of water cess.
Punjab Power Minister Harbhajan Singh ETO thanked the Union Power Minister for giving his support on this issue. He also suggested to construct small balancing reservoirs on down streams of Major Dams in India to provide water for irrigation as well as generating power in full capacity. Principal Secretary, PSPCL Tejveer Singh and CMD PSPCL Baldev Singh Sran were also present on the occasion.