The Gujarat Electricity Regulatory Commission (GERC) has passed an order stating that no additional surcharge will apply to consumers of four of Gujarat’s DISCOMs for utilizing power through open access between April and September 2019.
The GERC heard a petition filed by Gujarat Urja Vikas Nigam Limited (GUVNL) and its four subsidiary distribution companies regarding the additional surcharge for the period between April 1, 2019, and September 30, 2019. These DISCOMs are Madhya Gujarat Vij Company Limited (MGVCL), Uttar Gujarat Vij Company Limited (UGVCL), Paschim Gujarat Vij Company Limited (PGVCL) and Dakshin Gujarat Vij Company Limited (DGVCL).
The Gujarat commission, through this order, had to decide the applicability of additional surcharge to the open access consumers, a methodology for the computation of the surcharge and the rate of surcharge applicable for the period.
The commission, while reviewing the petition, said that the additional surcharge would be calculated based on the data for the previous period between April 1, 2018, and September 30, 2018, which would be submitted by GUVNL and its distribution companies.
After reviewing data submitted by GUVNL, the commission observed that no additional surcharge would apply to the consumers who received power through open access from any source other than their respective DISCOMs and for the open access transactions from April 1, 2019, to September 30, 2019.
The commission had also directed them to provide the details to determine additional surcharge for each six-monthly period as per the intra-state open access regulations. The Commission further directed GUVNL to submit a practicing chartered accountant’s certificate, certifying the six months’ data for the calculation of additional surcharge.
Last year, the GERC issued an order stating that an additional surcharge of ₹0.44 (~$0.0060)/kWh will be applicable in case of open access consumers who avail power through open access from any source other than their respective distribution companies and for open access transactions from October 1, 2018, to March 31, 2019.
In the past, Uttarakhand Electricity Regulatory Commission (UERC) had issued the terms and conditions of intra-state open access for 2018 under which the agency introduced a cross-subsidy surcharge for open access consumers.
Various state electricity regulatory commissions (SERCs) have diverse views on open access and the imposition of a surcharge on it. There is a need for a uniform methodology to determine various charges such as open access, cross-subsidy surcharge, and additional surcharges, across the country. This will help reduce the complexity and bring in much-needed clarity and efficiency to the markets.
Soumik is a staff reporter at Mercom India. Prior to joining Mercom, Soumik was a correspondent for UNI, New Delhi covering the Northeast region for seven years. He has also worked as an Asia Correspondent for Washington DC-based Hundred Reporters. He has contributed as a freelancer to several national and international digital publications with a focus on data-based investigative stories on environmental corruption, hydro power projects, energy transition and the circular economy. Soumik is an Economics graduate from Scottish Church College, Calcutta University.