Chief Minister of Puducherry V Narayanasamy on Saturday said the territorial government was against the Centre’s move to privatise power distribution.
“The Centre’s current proposal to privatise power distribution in Puducherry is not acceptable. We will move the court to prevent the Centre from going ahead with its move,” he told reporters here.
He said he had received a letter a few days back from the Centre urging the territorial government to privatise power distribution.
“I have made it clear already both inside and outside the territorial Assembly that power distribution here will never be opened up for private players,” he said.
Puducherry does not have an Electricity Board and distribution of power has been done traditionally through a department. The power sector is not suffering any loss.
Hence, there is no room for any move to privatise power distribution here, the Chief Minister said.
He appealed to the electricity department staff, who have been on a relay strike since Friday opposing the Centre`s decision, to withdraw their agitation as the territoral government was on their side.
He said the strike would put the consumers to hardship as there have already been complaints of power cuts in the wake of the rains.
Therefore, he said, the protestors should drop their stir and attend to restoration of power supply.
“The territorial government will stand in solidarity with the employees and we are ready to join hands with them even through a court case to prevent the privatisation of power sector,” Narayanasamy said.
The Chief Minister flayed Lieutenant Governor Kiran Bedi over the free rice scheme, blaming her for preventing implementation of welfare schemes.
The Lieutenant Governor takes the stand that only cash equivalent to the quantum of rice should be deposited in the bank accounts of beneficiaries (both BPL and APL categories) under DBT system although the government wanted distribution of rice through fair price shops,” he said.
“The scheme was conceptualised by the territorial government and funds were earmarked in the budget. We were also taking steps to buy rice from Food Corporation of India,” he said.
But, Bedi, developing imaginary thoughts that corruption would creep into the implementation of rice scheme if rice was supplied to the cardholders, changed the modalities of implementation and insisted only cash payment be adopted instead of supplying rice, he said.
Bedi is putting hurdles thereby overruling almost all the decisions of the Cabinet. Nowhere in the country, a Governor or a Lt Governor functions like this, he said.
Referring to the ongoing protest against by farmers seeking repeal of the farm laws, the Chief Minister appealed to the Prime Minister Narendra Modi to unconditionally scrap the laws as they were not “farmer-friendly”.
The DMK, Communist parties and farmers outfits here launched agitations today protesting against the laws, he said and urged the Prime Minister to scrap the legislations unconditionally.