Three power distributing companies (discoms), managed by Reliance Infra in the state, owe Rs 2,649.95 crore dues to the state owned bulk power trader Gridco towards power purchase and securitised loans, as per government data revealed in the Odisha state assembly. The dues are calculated up to September 2012 and have to be paid by North Eastern Electricity Supply Company (Nesco), Western Electricity Supply Company (Wesco) and Southern Electricity Supply Company (Southco).
Among these companies, Wesco owes Rs 1,095.08 crore , the highest. It has to pay Rs 842.10 crore towards power purchase, Rs 240.78 crore for securitised loan and Rs 12.19 crore for other dues.
Nesco, which is entrusted with power supply responsibilities in north Odisha, has outstanding dues worth Rs 858.77 crore , comprising Rs 596.96 crore for power purchase, Rs 50 crore securitised loan, Rs 50 crore bond dues and other dues of Rs 7 crore.
Similarly Southco has to pay Rs 696.11 crore to the state-run power trader, which includes Rs 285 crore for power purchase, Rs 234.65 crore loan payments, Rs 146.45 crore bond dues, and other dues worth Rs 29.99 crore.
To repay the dues, the discoms had opened an escrow account in the name of Gridco and have been depositing revenue collected from the consumers in it. But they have been facing problems to repay the dues because of deficit bill collection.
As per official data, the three discoms are yet to collect electricity bills amounting to Rs 900 crore from the consumers. Southco tops the list with Rs 519.48 crore arrear bills, followed by Nesco (Rs 297.55 crore), and Wesco (Rs 80.17 crore).
A top official of Reliance Infra said, it has defaulted in payment of power purchase bills to Gridco on some occasions due to squeezing profit margin, decreasing gap between power purchase and sales tariff, which is determined by the Odisha Electricity Regulatory Commission (OERC).
"Certain portions of the bill are also disputed and are under trial at different forums. Sometimes, we have disagreement with Gridco over power purchase bills and sometimes industrial consumers halt payments citing objections. All these factors have led to the huge outstanding amount," said A K Bohra, chief executive of Central Service Office, the umbrella arm of three Reliance infra discoms in Odisha.
Source- Business standard