Modi takes a dig at AAP over reduced power bills
NEW DELHI: In an apparent dig at AAP over its poll
pledge to reduce power bills, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday wondered
how such promises could be made by political parties in states which are
dependent on electricity supply from outside.
“During every election, political parties promise free
power…People need to think about these promises,” said Modi at a renewable
energy conference here.
The parties make these promises in such states who
rely on electricity supply from other states, he added. “Water accounts for a
major chunk of the input cost of farmers. The cost of water is basically due to
cost of power. We have to understand the problems farmers are facing,” said
Arvind Kejriwal-led AAP trounced the BJP in Delhi
assembly polls. The party in its election manifesto had promised to cut
electricity bills by half among other freebies. Delhi has a power demand of
about 5,000 MW and is largely dependent on other states to meet its
Reacting to Modi’s apparent dig at AAP, senior party
leader and AAP’s Delhi Convenor Ashutosh urged the Prime Minister to help the
state government to make power affordable.
“I don’t want to make any adverse comment on the Prime
Minister. I just want to make a request to him on behalf of the party that he
should help us to make electricity affordable and cheaper because that will do
a lot of good to the people of Delhi and I hope that he also wants goodness of
people of state,” he said.
AAP leader Ashish Khetan, who played a crucial role in
chalking out party’s agenda to solve the power problem in the national capital,
said the previous governments neither promoted solar energy nor did they have
any good policy of any alternate source of energy.
“When coal-based energy is concerned we have to depend
on states like Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand among others. Secondly, power plants of
the country, though may be located in other states they produce electricity for
the whole country.
“Reducing power tariff and bringing in reforms in the
power sector is a different issue and linking it to power production is quite
weird,” he said. The Congress slammed Modi saying there is a huge gap between
what the Prime Minister preaches and practises.
“He should look within. The Prime Minister should
direct that question to (Punjab chief minister) Sardar Prakash Singh Badal to
whom they gave a Padma Vibhushan. Because after all the Akalis have been the
pioneers of politics of free power.