Maharashtra Energy Minister Nitin Raut on Friday demanded that the Centre take all states into confidence with regard to the proposed Electricity (Amendment) Bill 2020.
Speaking at a video conference meet organised by the Union ministry of power attended by chief ministers and energy ministers, Mr Raut claimed the bill was violative of the Constitutional mandate and undermined the federal structure.
Mr Raut claimed the Union government was privatising PSUs during the lockdown and was looking to give "backdoor entry" to private entities into the power sector by amending the Electricity Act.
Mr Raut said Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Limited (MSEDCL) had suffered losses due to the COVID-19 outbreak and asked the Centre for a Rs 10,000 crore grant.
He said grants should be released for the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Urja Suraksha evam Utthan (PM-KUSUM) scheme under which the state government will provide 1 lakh pumps per year to farmers over the next five years.
During the conference, Union Power Minister RK Singh appreciated Maharashtra for 100 percent implementation of Kusum Yojana and asked other states to do the same.
Mr Singh also said power equipment manufactured by China and Pakistan would be banned and 25 per cent import duty would be imposed.
Mr Raut told Mr Singh that Western Coalfields Limited (WCL) was providing poor quality coal which in turn was severely affecting power generation.
Mr Raut said Mahagenco had requested WCL to allot dedicated coal mines but the latter was levying mine specific charges which had increased cost of power production.
Mr Singh promised to look into the matter and said another meeting would be held to discuss waiver of mine specific charges.