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  Metros   Mumbai  18 Dec 2017  Mahavitaran disconnects power of 1 lakh agri pumps

Mahavitaran disconnects power of 1 lakh agri pumps

THE ASIAN AGE. | UMAKANT DESHPANDE
Published : Dec 18, 2017, 1:12 am IST
Updated : Dec 18, 2017, 1:12 am IST

Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis was not in favour of disconnecting the power lines of farmers and had stayed the action last month.

The govt has given nod to recover Rs 22,000 crore arrears from agriculture pump owners.
 The govt has given nod to recover Rs 22,000 crore arrears from agriculture pump owners.

Mumbai: The Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company (MSEDCL) or Mahavitaran has disconnected the power of more than one lakh agricultural pumps to recover arrears since last one week.

“The state government has given a green signal for the disconnection of agricultural pumps, so we took action,” a highly placed source from Mahavitaran told The Asian Age.

The financial condition of the Mahavitaran is not good and arrears of agricultural pumps has touched `22,000 crore.

Out of the 40 lakh farmers, who have agri pumps, almost 36 lakh have pending bills.

The state government and Mahavitaran gave the farmers an opportunity to pay off the arrears by declaring the ‘Krishi Sanjeevani’ scheme.

Mahavitaran offered them five installements but due to a poor response from the farmers, hardly `300 cr was collected against arrears and current bill.

Mahavitaran sends bills of `700-800 crore to farmers in each quarter. But the recovery rate is hardly 10 per cent, which amounts to `70-80 crore.

Hence after the deadline for joining the Krishi Sanjeevani scheme was over on November 30, we have started to take action by disconnecting power, said an official from Mahavitaran.

“This disconnection drive is strong in Marathwada as the arrears are more in that region. We don’t have any other option,” he added.

The government is already facing criticism over irregularities related to the implementation of the farmers’ loan waiver scheme.

Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis was not in favour of disconnecting the power lines of farmers and had stayed the action last month.

But seeing that the farmers’ dues remained unpaid, he vacated the stay and the company has been disconnecting power, a source said.

Tags: msedcl, mahavitaran, agricultural pumps