The electricity amendment bill was tossed to a standing committee soon after it was introduced in the Lok Sabha on Monday amidst protests by Opposition parties. The bill was criticised for attacking the federal structure of the Constitution as it gave the Centre over-riding powers to stop the supply of electricity to states for payment default.
The bill aims at the entry of private companies into the electricity distribution sector and seeks to enable power consumers to choose from multiple service providers as in the case of telecom.
Power minister R.K. Singh introduced the Electricity (Amendment) Bill 2022 and urged Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla to refer it to a parliamentary standing committee for wider consultations to address the Opposition concerns.
Congress member Manish Tewari said the bill sought to allow multiple private companies to provide electricity in the same area. Such a provision could lead to “privatisation of profits and nationalisation of losses”.
The bill seeks to amend section 42 of the Electricity Act to facilitate access to the network of a distribution licensee. It also seeks to amend section 14 of the Act for the use of the distribution network by all licensees