NTPC issues payment notices to 2 BSES units over non-payment of dues

NTPC, the power generation major, has issued a notice for non-payment to Reliance Infrastructure’s two electricity distribution utilities in this city, BSES Rajdhani Power (BRPL) and BSES Yamuna Power (BYPL).

This is for non-payment of dues totalling close to Rs 1,300 crore (respectively, around Rs 403 crore for BRPL and Rs 892 crore for BYPL). The notices were dated May 4 and says it is being given under the rules for regulation of power supply (meaning, NTPC will cut the supply) with effect from May 10. The  power allocated to these two from various NTPC stations is 2,027 Mw (1,349 Mw and 678 Mw to BRPL and BYPL, respectively). Their average monthly energy bills are respectively Rs 260 crore & Rs 130 crore.

“Payments by the BSES discoms had become irregular for quite some time. The matter was brought before the Supreme Court, (whose) judgement dated March 26, 2014, directed (them) to ensure payments of all current energy bills with effect from January 2014. However, the dues continued,” stated NTPC.

In an e-mailed reply, a BSES spokesperson said, “BSES is under huge financial stress due to non-liquidation of regulatory assets estimated to be over Rs 16,000 crore as on March 31, 2016. As compared to this, dues payable by BSES to NTPC are Rs 1,300 crore.”

NTPC said it has to pay in advance to its own fuel suppliers and this is 75-80 per cent of its monthly energy bill. If the non-payment of its dues continued, NTPC stations could face outages. “Under the circumstances, NTPC has no other option but to serve the notice,” said the company.

Peak demand for Delhi during the summer months is likely to touch 6000 Mw this year. The BSES spokesperson said the company was awaiting a Supreme Court judgement which would clear the path for recovery/liquidation of its regulatory assets.

“BSES discoms are also making concerted efforts to address the situation and clear pending dues in a just and equitable manner,” he said.

Industry executives, requesting anonymity, said the cost of buying power for the discoms in Delhi had since 2002 increased by around 300 per cent for reasons beyond their control.

“However, the retail tariff (rate) has increased by around 90 per cent only in the corresponding period. Delhi’s bulk power rate is 60 per cent higher than the national average, at Rs 5.49 per unit,” said one.

BYPL supplies power to 1.4 million customers over central and east Delhi areas. BRPL distributes power to 2.1 mn customers in south and west Delhi. In the remaining areas, Tata Power Delhi Distribution supplies power.

Business Standard is now on Telegram.
For insightful reports and views on business, markets, politics and other issues, subscribe to our official Telegram channel