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Home News Power Sector News Western Maharashtra farmers owe state Rs 11,000 crore in electricity dues

Western Maharashtra farmers owe state Rs 11,000 crore in electricity dues

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AgricultureChandrashekhar Bawankule, minister for energy, has held Sharad Pawar, Nationalist Congress Party president, responsible for the unpaid electricity bill by farmers. These are unpaid bills for using water pumps for agricultural use.  Bawankule has said, a total Rs 22,000 crore is due from farmers and out of which highest Rs 11,000 is due from farmers from Western and North Maharashtra region. He said farmers stopped to pay agricultural irrigation pump bills, since it was Pawar who had asked the farmers not to pay their bills.

Maharashtra state cabinet on Tuesday took the decision to provide one transformer for every two farmers through High Velocity Distribution Systems (HDVS). At present, Mahavitaran can provide one transformer to 15 to 20 farmers for agriculture pumps. Bawankule informed media about this decision after cabinet meeting.

Bawankule said the cabinet approved expenses of Rs 5048.13 crore to implement the scheme. He said, “State will need Rs 1900 crore to provide power to agriculture pumps in Marathwada and Vidarbha region for next two years. Out of which provision of Rs 600 crore has been made in state budget,” said the minister.

He said, a provision has been made for Marathwada and Vidarbha region from the budget. “For rest of the state, the state will borrow Rs 2500 crore from market. The state cabinet has given its approval to borrow this amount and state has given guarantee,” Bawankule said.

When asked how state will raise fund to provide transformers, the minister said, If 46 lakh farmers wil pay dues in time, Mahavitaran wil not need to borrow loan. “Farmers acorss the state have not paid dues of about Rs 22,000 crore towards power provided to agriculture pumps. Mahavitaran charge Rs 1.50 per unit to agriculture pump. However, Mahavitaran has to purchase power with the rate of Rs six per unit. We gave to bare loss of Rs. 4.5 per unit,” said the minister and added even though the rate of electricity is cheaper, farmers do not pays the bill. The principal amount of dues towards farmers is Es 13198 crore. Bawankule alleged after appeal of Pawar, farmers have stopped to pay electricity bill. Pawar in Halla Bol rally at Nagpur on December 12, 2027 had instructed farmers not to pay any dues to the state government.


Source- Firstpost


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