Replicating the Aam Aadmi Party’s model for Delhi, the Congress on Tuesday sought a comprehensive audit of power discoms in Mumbai, alleging a nexus between the Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Commission (MERC) and the discoms. Mumbai Congress chief Sanjay Nirupam, accompanied by party legislators from Mumbai, met Maharashtra Governor C Vidyasagar Rao over the demand.
The Arvind Kejriwal-led AAP had earlier successfully exploited the discomfort among citizens in Delhi against high electricity bills to come to power in Delhi. Congress insiders admitted that it’s move is aimed at retaining the lost clout in Mumbai, which is scheduled for civic polls in 2017. The Congress lost the general and assembly polls in Mumbai last year, and is keen to regain some lost ground in time for the civic polls.
“The Governor assured the delegation that he would direct the authorities concerned to probe the nexus. He also assured our delegation of taking up the audit demand,” said Nirupam, following his meeting with the Governor.
Following MERC’s decision to approve an increase in tariffs for discoms, the Congress had earlier initiated a citywide signature campaign against the same. “We received an overwhelming response with over 20 lakh citizens registering for the campaign. Photo copies of electricity bills of consumers along with their signatures were also submitted to the Governor,” said Nirupam.
In its memorandum, the Congress demanded that the Governor direct the BJP-led Maharashtra government to seek a more rationalised power tariff from power discoms. It further sought the Governor’s directive to the government for implementing a common power tariff for all domestic consumers with consumption up to 300 units.
Four power discoms-Reliance Infrastructure, Tata Power, state-run Mahavitran, and civic-body controlled Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport-supply power to consumers in Mumbai.