Power sector employees have held a protest against the privatization of DISCOM.

पावर सेक्टर

New Delhi: The All India Power Engineers Federation said that, on Thursday, 26th November, power sector employees held protests all over the nation against the higher hand’s decision to privatize DISCOM. The employees demanded abandoning the Standard Bidding Document (SBD) and withdrawal of the Electricity Bill of 2020. 

AIPEF spokesperson V.K Gupta spoke in a statement that lacks employees, including engineers and related officers, held national protests to pull back 2020’s Electricity Bill. It discarded the SBD and argued that the privatization of power distribution companies in union territories and states has to be stopped. 

Union territories and states, including Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Maharashtra, West Bengal, Jammu and Kashmir, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Assam, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, and Punjab sheltered the protest meetings and gatherings of the power sector employees. 

Ten central trade unions called for a strike on Thursday regarding the issue where some power engineers did not join, instead voiced their issues by staging a simple protest in the city. Some engineers were unwilling to join the mass, keeping in mind the commotion and the pandemic situation, so going simple and highlighting their issues is what they chose to do. Gupta, the spokesperson of AIPEF, stated that the Governing is bound and determined to create private monopolies in the corporate sector. Their primary motive is to help corporate houses by the privatization of DISCOM. 

It has been stated in the Standard Bidding Document that DISCOM undertakes privatization in all the states and union territories. It has been vehemently opposed by the protestors who held protests in all parts of the nation. Chairman Shailendra Dubey also stated that the engineers are opposing the privatization of electricity distribution. 

It has come to notice that the state government will be giving out money for bulk power to get started in the endeavor. The successor body will use bulk power to make it a financially independent good body of functions. A token payment will be used to lease and rent out the assets of DISCOM. 

Gupta stated that the expected transfer of public assets to the private sector had been restricted. The transfer of assets will result in a high tariff for consumers and cause discrepancies in the system. AIPEF, on the other hand, appealed that all processes of privatization of electricity had to be withdrawn in the states and the union territories. They also exclaimed that the privatization and franchise in the power actors have to be canceled. 

Gupta claimed that the center is badly deceiving the general people by assuring them that the electricity will get cheaper after the privatization. This information was vehemently opposed by Gupta, who advised the authority to cancel the ongoings. The tariff rate will increase by Rs.10 per unit for each consumer as the private discoms are permitted to take a minimum of 16 percent profit. 

A statement said that the commodity would be more expensive for general consumers and cheaper for industrial consumers if the chief government eradicates the cross-subsidy and subsidy in the electricity supply. Gupta noted in his statement that the urban distribution franchisee model and privatization have utterly failed in every part of the country.

The AIPEF said that the state governments must exercise their freedom to accept payment of subsidy as per needs, regarding direct benefit relocation of the subsidy to consumers.The political parties, resident welfare associations, and the consumers of Chandigarh have opposed the privatization of electricity of DISCOM. 

The Puducherry government has also opposed the privatization of the electricity supply.