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New Delhi: Power minister R K Singh has chaired a review meeting with states and power utilities and stressed on the need to address inefficiencies in distribution sector with priority on reduction of losses, maintaining proper subsidy accounts among other things.

“The minister stressed on the need to address inefficiencies in distribution sector with priority on reduction of losses, maintaining proper subsidy accounts, energy accounting and to ensure prepaid smart metering implementation to enhance revenue realization and thereby avoiding undesirable borrowings," the power ministry said in a statement.

During the meeting held on January 23-24, status of Revamped Distribution Sector Scheme (RDSS) launched by government to enhance operation efficiency to ensure financial viability of the distribution sector was discussed and state wise progress of the scheme was deliberated in detail.

The minister reviewed state wise performance of discoms/power departments, compliance to pre-qualification criteria under RDSS, progress on RDSS implementation and other key elements including subsidy and energy accounting, corporate governance etc.

The minister stressed on implementation of smart metering in pre-paid mode. The states have been advised to expedite the implementation of scheme.

The states were further advised to ensure that no penalty be levied on any consumer for higher load discovered after installation of prepaid smart meter and billing may be done on actual load basis.

The minister appreciated the efforts made by all the stakeholders in addressing AT&C loss in the country which has resulted in overall reduction of AT&C losses by 5% in FY 2021-22. Singh recognized the efforts made by states, who have achieved more than 3% reduction in AT&C losses from FY 2020-21 to FY 2021-22, and appreciated the initiatives taken to meet such reduction.

These states include Andhra Pradesh, Haryana, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Meghalaya, Punjab, Rajasthan, Tripura and West Bengal.

The states that have not been able to improve on their losses were advised to take up measures for achieving loss reduction targets.

The meeting discussed aspects related to financial viability of power sector and issues related to fiscal discipline and payment of dues towards gencos.

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