Chennai: DMDK chief and the Leader of the Opposition in Tamil Nadu Assembly Vijayakanth today criticised Chief Minister Jayalalithaa for distancing her government from the power tariff hike proposed by the state electricity regulatory commission and demanded steps to withdraw it.
“The proposal to increase electricity tariff for users of all categories like domestic, educational institutions, industries and commercial should be cancelled,” he said.
“Jayalalithaa is trying to wriggle out (of the hike issue) by claiming that it was the Tamil Nadu Electricity Regulatory Commission which is increasing the tariff,” Vijaykanth, whose party is a partner of NDA, said in a statement here.
Whenever the Centre hiked fuel prices, Jayalalithaa had been demanding its rollback claiming that it would affect the people, he pointed out and wanted to know if the “same general public” will not be affected if power tariff was hiked.
TNERC has proposed a tariff increase of 15 per cent (average) for domestic consumers, 31 per cent for industries and 15 per cent for commercial users to bridge a revenue deficit of Rs 6,854 crore of state-run power corporation TANGEDCO.
Referring to Jayalalithaa's assurance that the poor will be protected by additional subsidy in the event of tariff hike, he sought to know the parameters used to define poor.
“How they are going to define poor? Even a middle class family is consuming more than 500 units bi-monthly,” he said.