The uproar over the Electricity (Amendment) Bill, 2022

Source: The post is based on the article “The uproar over the Electricity (Amendment) Bill, 2022” published in The Hindu on 11th August 2022.

Syllabus: GS 3 – Infrastructure: Energy, Ports, Roads, Airports, Railways etc.

Relevance: About the concerns associated with the Electricity (Amendment) Bill.

News: The Union Power Ministry introduced the Electricity (Amendment) Bill, 2022 in Lok Sabha.

What are the key provisions of the Electricity (Amendment) Bill?
Read here: Explained: Electricity Bill – promise, problems
What is the history of the Electricity Act?

The Electricity Bill was brought for the first time and passed in Parliament in 2003.


-To consolidate the laws relating to generation, transmission, distribution, trading and use of electricity.

-To protect consumers’ interest and supply of electricity to all areas, rationalisation of electricity tariff, transparent policies regarding subsidies etc.

Outcome: The Act resulted in the privatisation of distributing companies.

Amendment: The 2007 amendment included provisions for “cross subsidy.” Thus ensured subsidy to poor households was added to the Bill.

Later many amendment Bills remained in their draft form but it wasn’t cleared.

Read more: Explained: Electricity amendment bill 2021 —why are states such as WB opposing it?
What are the concerns associated with the present Electricity bill?

a) Privatisation of distribution companies and generating units might result in job losses, b) The Bill might result in the privatisation of profits and the nationalisation of losses, c) The Bill is silent on subsidised power provided to poor farmers in States like Tamil Nadu.

The other concerns are,

Make Centre powerful: The Bill proposes Centre’s intervention in the area of power distribution. Further, the amendment empowers the Central Government to prescribe the criteria.

The issue with multiple distribution licensees: Such a provision might create a situation similar to the telecom sector where monopoly companies will destroy the public sector and smaller networks.

Read more: Government policies are successful in ensuring reliable electricity supply
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