Power dues to AP: Telangana to contest Centre's order in court
Telangana will initiate a legal battle over the Centre's orders with regard to the payment of power supply dues to Andhra Pradesh
HYDERABAD: The Telangana Government will initiate a legal battle over the Centre's orders of Monday with regard to the payment of power supply dues to Andhra Pradesh, said Telangana Energy Minister Jagdish Reddy on Tuesday.
Addressing the media in Suryapet, he described the order issued by the Union Ministry of Power as "a conspiracy by the Centre against Telangana". Claiming that Telangana was the only state in the country providing 24-hour power supply, he alleged that the Narendra Modi Government was throwing the proverbial spanner in the works of the state for precisely this reason.
Calling the order as unreasonable and politically motivated, Jagdish Reddy expressed the doubts that the latest action was part of the Centre's plot to warrant power cuts in the state. He also alleged that the order was part of the NDA government's politics of vengeance. "KCR has been maintaining that free power could be made possible for the farming community all across the country with available resources. And the Centre is finding this unpalatable," the Minister said.
The Telangana Power Minister also claimed that Telangana should be paid about Rs 12,000 crores towards power supply dues. The Centre has come up with unilateral orders based only on the contentions of Andhra Pradesh and without hearing out Telangana's claims. He also blamed the Modi government for putting the Telangana Discoms under stress for well over a year.
The Centre, on Monday, directed the Telangana Government to pay a total of Rs 6,756.92 crores to Andhra Pradesh towards what it described as power supply dues. The Union Ministry of Power, in its order, said that the total dues comprised Rs 3,441.78 crores towards principal amount and Rs 3,315.14 towards late payment surcharge, "as per applicable provisions".
While mentioning that Andhra Pradesh had supplied the power following the instructions from the Central Government's Power System Operation Corporation as per the reorganisation act, it directed Telangana to pay up the power dues to Andhra Pradesh within 30 days.
Interestingly, the Centre's order comes close on the heels of Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Jaganmohan Reddy reiterating his request in this regard during his recent meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Delhi. Andhra Pradesh has submitted numerous representations to the Centre, seeking its intervention to resolve the dispute with Telangana over the power supply dues.
Post bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh, APGenco had supplied power to Telangana Discoms from 02.06.2014 till 10.06.2017, complying with clause C.2 of Schedule XII of AP Reorganisation Act 2014. But with the Telangana Government strongly contesting the residuary state, the issue has been hanging fire since then.