Assam Chief Minister Warns of Possible Power Cuts Or Tariff Hike Amid Soaring Electricity Demand

Editor Editor
Thursday, September 07, 2023
Assam Chief Minister Warns of Possible Power Cuts Or Tariff Hike Amid Soaring Electricity Demand
Assam Faces Electricity Crisis as Demand Soars: Chief Minister Addresses Power Cut Concerns
Guwahati, September 7, 2023: Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma held a press conference in Guwahati on September 6 to address growing concerns over frequent power cuts in the state. The Chief Minister revealed that Assam is grappling with a significant surge in peak-hour electricity demand, exceeding its available supply, leading to daily power cuts that have affected residents across the region.

Historically, Assam's electricity supply has never exceeded 1,800 megawatts. However, this time around, the state is witnessing an unprecedented rise in demand, with peak-hour consumption reaching as high as 2,500 megawatts. In contrast, the available supply currently stands at a mere 1,650 megawatts. To bridge this gap, Chief Minister Sarma announced the procurement of an additional 150 megawatts from open sources.

Sarma acknowledged the severity of the situation and emphasized that securing extra power through agreements with companies would be a lengthy process, potentially taking up to three years. In the interim, Assam has resorted to purchasing electricity from external sources at a cost of Rs 10 per megawatt to meet immediate requirements.

To ensure uninterrupted 24-hour power supply to residents and alleviate the ongoing power cuts, the Assam Power Distribution Company Limited (APDCL) would need to source an additional 700 megawatts from external providers. This would incur a daily expenditure of Rs 6 crore, a burden that may ultimately result in a tariff hike of Rs 1 for consumers.

The Chief Minister further elaborated that if the tariff increase is not implemented, the government may have no choice but to resort to short-term load shedding measures. Under this contingency plan, electricity in all areas would be temporarily cut for 15 minutes at intervals to balance the energy demand and supply equation.

The situation remains precarious, and the government's decision in the coming days will play a pivotal role in mitigating the power crisis and ensuring a reliable electricity supply for the people of Assam. As residents await the outcome of the cabinet meeting, the state braces itself for the challenging task of balancing electricity demand with available resources in the midst of rising consumer expectations.