A day after the hike in electricity tariff was announced, Kerala Power Minister M.M. Mani on Tuesday said that with the monsoons failing, there is no other way but to impose power cuts in the state.
"In 10 days time, the state will have to witness power cuts. The details are being worked out and the cuts could extend from 30 minutes to an hour everyday. We have no other option, as after the first 40 days of the monsoon, there has been a shortage of 46 per cent in rains and hence most of the dams in the state have started to dry up," Mani said.
The Idukki dam which is the biggest generator of electricity for supply to the state grid, has just 13 per cent water left in the dam, as on Tuesday, according to Mani.
"There is water left for just few more days for power generation and hence we have to go forward with power cuts. But, we are trying our best to see that we bring additional power and here again, there is a problem, there are few lines through which power can be brought from outside the state," he said.
Kerala is heavily dependent on hydel power generation with 72 per cent of the total installed capacity of power in the state (2,956.47 MW) coming through this source, generated from various dams in the state.
On Monday, following the recommendation of the Kerala State Electricity Board, the Kerala State Electricity Regulatory Commission decided to hike the tariff by around 11 per cent.
Addressing a press conference in Thiruvananthapuram, Preman Dinaraj, Chairman of the Kerala State Electricity Regulatory Commission announced that the revised rates will not be applicable to families that come under Below Poverty Line (BPL). It was also stated that cancer patients, polio patients, and people who are permanently disabled due to an accident, will get a tariff reduction.
Kerala Pradesh Congress (KPCC) Chief Mullapally Radhakrishnan, said that the state government and the Centre are looting the public when majority of people in the state are yet to recover from the devastating floods in August last year.
With IANS inputs