KSEB among 10 worst performing electricity boards in India

Kochi: The central power ministry has ranked the Kerala State Electricity Board (KSEB) among the 10 worst performing boards in the country.

The political decision to roll back the August 2002 power hike and the highly subsidised domestic tariff are among a host of other factors that have been identified as reasons for the poor performance. The ministry has also warned the Kerala government that it has a difficult task ahead if it is to bring the power sector back to an even keel.

The new scoring, announced on 8 January 2003, has bracketed Kerala with Jammu and Kashmir in the 16th position. The KSEB has scored only 32.5 out of 100 in the rating, according the study jointly carried out by Credit Rating Information Services of India Ltd (Crisil) and Investment, Information Credit Rating Agency (ICRA). The KSEB is also the worst performer among other southern states, figuring below Andhra Pradesh (71.5), Karnataka (68) and Tamil Nadu (47.5).

Other states joining Kerala at the end of the rating are Madhya Pradesh, Meghalaya, Sikkim, Tripura, Assam, Nagaland, Manipur, Mizoram, Bihar and Arunachal Pradesh.

The study, mandated by the Power Finance Corporation (PFC) under the Accelerated Power Development and Reform Programme, is aimed at creating a performance framework that will benchmark all states on a common platform.

According to the Crisil-ICRA findings, the Kerala government has not been very supportive in terms of legislation or finances. “The setting up of an independent electricity regulatory commission (ERC) is long overdue and there has been no major legislation to reform the power sector. The government has also not released any subsidy for the last 10 years and is among the worst performing states on this front.”