According to the latest date, the outstanding dues of distribution companies aka Discoms in February 2020 has increased in comparison to the preceding month. The debt owed by the companies to power producers in February 2020 stood at Rs. 92,693 crores.
This amount increased at a rate of 31% over the year-ago same month. This reflects the stress that the sector is fighting through. In the previous year, same time, they owed a total of Rs. 70,706 crore to power generation companies.
The data issues by portal PRAAPTI says. PRAAPTI is an acronym for Payment ratification and analysis in power procurement for bringing Transparency in invoicing if generators and was launched in May 2018 with the motive of bringing transparency in power purchase transactions between Gencos and Discoms.
The overdue in February 2019 was Rs 53,703 crore as compared to 2020’s overdue of Rs, 80,616 crores, which was not cleared even after a grace period of 69 days offered by the gencos. The overdue amount in February also raised over the preceding month, from Rs.76,585 crore in January 2020.
The gencos provide a period of 2 months to the Discoms for the payment of bills for the supply of electricity, after which, the outstanding dues become overdue and the generators charge penalties. The distribution companies located in Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu are responsible for the majority of the dues to power generation companies.
Independent gencos account for 25.42% and PSU gencos account for 39.53% of the total overdue if Rs. 80,616 crore of Discoms in February.
The central public sector power generators are not behind. NTPC tops the list with an overdue amounting to Rs. 11,615.80 crore, followed by NLC India at Rs. 5,208.51 crores.
Then standing in the queue are Damodar Valley Corporation, NHPC and THDC India at Rs. 4,920.39 cr, Rs. 2,842.75 cr and Rs. 2,188.90 crore respectively.
The private generators that are owed the highest overdue are RKMP, Adani Power, Bajaj Group-owned Lalitpur power generation company and GMR at Rs. 3,421.68 cr, Rs. 3,201,68 crore,Rs.2,216.66 crore and Rs.1,930,16 crore, respectively.
In order to provide some relief, the government provided a payment security mechanism from August 1, 2019, under which the Discoms are required to open letters of credit for getting power supply.
Amidst the outbreak also, the government has given leeway to them for paying their dues to the gencos due to the turbulence caused by the lockdown to contain Covid-19 across the country. Adding to this, the penal charges for late payment have also been waived off.