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Kerala To Raise Power Tariffs

At a special meeting of the state Cabinet held in Thiruvanathapuram on August 3, the Kerala government has decided to raise electricity tariffs to overcome the power crisis.

Kerala, which depends on hydel power in a big way, has been witnessing a drop in the water level in hydel projects' reservoirs.

The drop in the water level may force the state to depend more on thermal power stations.

The generation of the thermal power being more expensive than the hydel power, it will result in an additional burden of around Rs 85 crore on the Kerala State Electricity Board.

While the state power minister, K Sivadasan, is insisting on a steep across-the-board increase in power tariffs to pull the KSEB out of the red, the industry minister, P K Kunhalikutty, is opposed to any hike in the tariff for commercial consumers.

He emphasised that an increase in tariff for industry was untenable on the eve of the Global Investors' Meet, which is scheduled to be held in November.

On account of this divergent perceptions, chief minister A K Antony said the increase in power tariffs was inevitable.

However, the exact hike would be finalised only in the next meeting of the state Cabinet.

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First Published: Tue, August 06 2002. 00:00 IST
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