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PSPCL fudging T&D losses for extra subsidy?
Is Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL) fudging the transmission and distribution losses (T&D losses) figures to get extra subsidy from Punjab Government for power supplied to agriculture sector?

Punjab Government in its letter of August 27, 2013 had pointed out that gross irregularities are being committed by PSPCL in the assessment of power being supplied to agriculture sector. Moreover this directly influences the T&D losses and the amount of subsidy to be paid by the Government.

Punjab State Electricity Regulatory Commission (PSERC) had pointed out to Punjab Government that as per its audit PSPCL has claimed 2157 million units of excess consumption for agriculture sector in last three years (2010-13) resulting in higher subsidy amounting to Rs. 814 crore.

This implies that transmission and distribution losses being projected by PSPCL are on lower side. PSERC audit found that year wise T&D losses for the period 2010-13 will be 19.20%, 18.89% and 19.83% against PSPCL claim of 18.49%, 17.42% and 17% respectively.

However in its tariff petition for the year 2014-15 PSPCL has not taken any cognizance of the Punjab Governments observation and has again fudged T&D line losses and has claimed that these losses shall be reduced to 16.44 and 16 % in 2013-14 and 2014-15 respectively.

PSPCL in its tariff petition for 2014-15 has shown a revenue gap of Rs. 2595 crore which needs to be bridged by an average tariff increase of 63 paise per unit. In case the booking of agriculture sector power consumption is reduced by the PSERC on the basis of its own assessment the annual  revenue gap is going to further increase by Rs. 1000 crore.

In case PSERC take cognizance of last three years a cut in Punjab Governments subsidy of nearly Rs. 140,250,350crore for the years 2010-11, 2011-12 and 2012-13 can be expected. The total revenue gap may increase from Rs. 2595 crore to Rs. 4335 crore and to bridge the gap average tariff increase of 106 paise per unit will be required.

The only way to survive for PSPCL will be how it is able to sell its surplus power either within country or to Pakistan with the help of Government of India. Punjab Government will have to make it's all out efforts to pursue Government of India  for selling power to Pakistan as  India has a stranded capacity of about 20000MW and every investor in power sector of India will be keen to sell its power to Pakistan.

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