Domestic consumers in Punjab will get 300 units of free electricity each month from July 1, CM Bhagwant Mann said as he announced the “good news” he had been hinting at since he took office a month ago. He said Punjab will be the second state after Delhi to provide free power.
Free electricity was one of the key pre-poll promises of AAP, with party chief Arvind Kejriwal assuring 300 units during his election campaign last year. “We will fulfil all our promises in the next five years,” Mann said.
The freebie comes with a rider that if a household exceeds more than 600 units in two months, it will have to pay the full bill. Punjab has a two-month billing cycle. The move will put an estimated additional burden of Rs 5,000 crore on the state exchequer, according to AAP MLA Aman Arora. “But the AAP governance model will ensure that the burden is not transferred to the people,” he said.
Mann said rates of industrial and commercial units will not be hiked and free electricity for the agriculture sector will continue. He also announced a waiver of pending bills up to 2KW load till December 31, 2021.