The Jammu and Kashmir National Conference today expressed concern over the proposed move of Government to privatize power distribution companies (DISCOM) in Jammu and Kashmir, saying the measure will impinge on people’s right to free energy.
While expressing dismay over the proposed privatization of power distribution sector (DISCOM) in Jammu and Kashmir, Party’s Members Parliament Akbar Lone and Hasnain Masoodi said the ongoing situation and the previous clampdown have broken the back of J&K’s economy and that the privatization of power distribution will further push people to wall.
“The measure will majorly hit the BPL consumers, and middle class, and farmers who have already been at the receiving end due to the untoward situation prevailing in J&K since 2016. As per the new proposed privatization measure, a Central enforcement authority may be set up which will dis-empower the Regulatory Commissions and will further add to the centralization of power authority in wake of no consideration for problems faced by locals,” the duo said.
Terming the proposed measure as draconian and anti- poor, NC MPs said the proposed privatization will snatch the access to electricity from economically challenged sections of the society. “The decision is solely a prerogative of a popularly elected Government,” they said adding, “Economy activity in J&K has shrunk since 2014 due to the deluge of 2014, and the subsequent upheaval of 2016, the post August 5 clampdown and the latest COVID-19 induced lockdown. Private players are cash strapped, employability is at its lowest ebb, and inflation has already broken the back of middle class. It is highly unbecoming of the Government to come up with such measures when the economy of J&K is struggling. Far from proving succor to the people, the Government is adamant on sucking the life and blood of people.
MPs argued that the proposed measure will affect the ecology as the energy starved people will take to burning of wood. “It is quite obvious that people will ultimately bank on wood and other non renewable and harmful resources to meet their energy demands. It is distressing to see Government clueless on augmentation on renewable resources of energy in J&K despite having a vast potential in solar energy, wind energy and geo thermal energy. No significant headway has been made on making biogas a popular and viable source of energy in rural areas,” they added.