Bhubaneswar, Mar 31: The Opposition BJP and Congress today demanded in the state Assembly to rollback the proposed power tariff hike to be effective from April 4. The Speaker was forced to adjourn the proceedings to hold an all party meeting to resolve the deadlock.
Raising the issue in the Assembly during the Zero Hour, Leader of Opposition (LoP) Pradipta Kumar Naik said that the proposed hike would hit the people hard. He, therefore asked the state government to revoke the decision.
The demand was also supported by Congress legislature party leader Narasingha Mishra. Both BJP and Congress members rushed to the Well in supported of the demand.
Opposition Chief Whip, Mohan Charn Majhi said that the state government had hiked power tariff during Covid-19, which hit the people hard. Again they are imposing power tariff hike. ” We will raise our protest inside and outside the House, if the state government does not withdraw the proposed hike,” threatened Majhi.
Stating that the private power distribution companies have an outstanding due of Rs 6,000 crore, the Opposition Chief Whip alleged that the state government was fleecing the poor instead of recovering the arrears from these private companies.
On the other hand, ruling BJD MLA Amar Prasad Satpathy said that Assembly is the forum for discussion. The power tariff hike issue could have been discussed in the House. But, it has been a habit of Opposition BJP and Congress to stall the House on every issue.
The state government does not revise power tariff hike nor does it intervene. It is the Odisha Electricity Regulatory Commission, which decides power tariff in consultation with distribution companies and the consumers, Satpathy said.