Chandigarh (Punjab) [India], July 5 (ANI): Hitting out at Punjab Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh over his remarks concerning power purchase agreements (PPA), Shiromani Akali Dal leader Sukhbir Singh Badal on Monday said that the Congress government must provide affordable 24x7 power supply as done by SAD-led government instead of the politicising issue of fixed charges being paid to thermal plants.
Badal said in a series of tweets that Amarinder Singh must take "onus for covering shortfall of 4,500 MW in the state" and alleged that the Congress government did not build on the infrastructure despite an increase in power demand in the state.
Badal, who addressed a press conference, said the Congress government was "punishing consumers with high taxes which must be immediately taken back".
He said the SAD-led government set up thermal plants at the cheapest possible rates as per Congress-led UPA government's "standard PPA document".
He said Amarinder Singh must take "onus for covering shortfall of 4,500 MW in the state".
Terming the Congress government as "inept," Badal alleged that Amarinder Singh did not "add a single MW" to the state's power capacity.
"Cong government must provide affordable 24x7 power supply as erstwhile SAD-led govt did, instead of politicising issue of fixed charges being paid to thermal plants. Cancel PPAs with the plants if it can bring cheap power but CM must take onus for covering shortfall of 4,500 MW," he said.
"It was Akali Dal government, following UPA govt's standard PPA doc, set up thermal plants at cheapest possible rates. The plants were built due to a huge shortfall in 2007 because Capt Amarinder Singh didn't add a single MW leading to overloaded of sub stations and 10-hr daily power cuts," he added.
Badal said SAD government spent Rs 5,000 crore in upgrading transmission and distribution network and Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL) was even awarded the best electricity utility award in 2015.
"But despite hike in demand of 500 MW power every year this totally inept Cong govt didn't build on the infrastructure," he said.
"Shame that Punjab government hasn't paid Rs 5,000 crore due to PSPCL and government departments owe power utility Rs 2,200 crore with no money earmarked for repair and maintenance. Instead of corrective measures, the Amarinder Singh government is punishing consumers with high taxes which must be immediately taken back," he said.
Amarinder Singh had on Saturday said his government would soon announce its legal strategy to counter the Power purchase agreement (PPA), signed by the former SAD-BJP government, which had put an "atrociously unnecessary financial" burden on the state.
The state is scheduled to go for polls early next year. (ANI)