News Release – Hunger Strike against proposed Renewable Energy Policy (RE Policy 2019) by Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Commission (MERC)

I am Devendra Govind Ranade, Director M M Solar Pvt. Ltd. Surendra Nagar, Nagpur. I, Devendra G. Ranade along with Mr. Amit Deotale, Director Green Life Solutions Pvt. Ltd. Nagpur and Mr. Pankaj Gade of Ishaan Energy Savers Nagpur will be starting the Hunger Strike from December 7 th 2019 at Diksha Bhumi Square, Nagpur. 

The Draft of New RE Policy is the biggest injustice for the RE Users  and RE Business entities and entire RE Industry, it is forceful imposition of undue and unwanted clauses in the said Net Billing Policy and against the right of use of Renewable Energy Sources. 

Presently in state of Maharashtra, for Renewable Energy “Net Metering Policy” is in force and a big number of RE users are enjoying the benefits of RE Generation by installing RE Systems at their Rooftops/places. The MERC had introduced this policy sue-motto in the year 2015 to boost the Renewable 

Energy Generation in the state. But now, the Maha-Discom submitted a petition to the MERC that instead of “Net Metering Policy” MERC should introduce “Net Billing policy” and considering the petition of Maha-Discom the MERC has proposed new regulation and Draft of the same is introduced on the internet. MERC has called for objections/suggestions on the said Draft of new RE Policy. Some objectionable points in the proposed new unconventional energy policy 

➋ According to the current policy, 100% return of Renewable Energy generated through the Net Metering System to domestic consumers. 

➋ According to the new proposed policy, only up to 300 units will be refunded as per the Net Metering System. The remaining usage will have to be paid at the prescribed rate. E.g. If the monthly electricity consumption is 600 units, of which 500 units of electricity is generated per month by installing solar power installed on the Rooftop, then under the Net Metering System will have to subtract 500 units and pay only for 100 units in excess. The Bill Amount will be generally ₹ 400 / – 

According to the new policy, due to the Net Billing System, 300 units will be deducted as per Net Metering Policy and the remaining 300 units will have to pay the usual rate of. 2100 /- as per New Proposed RE Policy. That is, the current and new policies will have to be paid exactly ₹ 1700 / -. 

➋ Also, if the electricity consumption is less than the generated electricity, the remaining power units are recorded in the deposit account. Which can be used in later times 

➋ According to the new policy, if the consumption is less than the generated electricity, the remaining electricity will be paid to the customer at the prescribed rate, if purchased by the distribution company at a rate of ₹ 3.50 / unit. 

➋ According to the current policy, the power that the consumer is subjected to in any category, can generate Renewable energy according to the Net Metering System. 

➋ Under the new proposed policy, the Net Metering System will not be applicable for any other category of power consumers other than the domestic consumer. 

Such customers will apply the Net Billing System and in this method, the power distribution company will buy power generated from the Renewable Energy source at a rate of ₹ 3.50 / unit and the customer will have to pay the balance due by deducting such purchase from payment of electricity consumption at the prescribed rate. 

For example, if a commercial customer generates 500 units of electricity from Renewable energy source equipment and gives it to the distribution company, his monthly power consumption is 500 units. He has to pay a balance of 3250 / – by subtracting ₹ 1750 from it which is purchased by Distribution company. RE workers from entire state of Maharashtra has sent objections/suggestions to MERC. Hon. Union Minister, Ex Energy Minister of the State, MLAs, many other public leaders, distinguished thinkers, Engineers, persons in the society, a big number of Industrial/Social/Educational Associations have also sent their objections/suggestions to the MERC. There are about 40,000 such objections/suggestions received by the MERC. 

If the proposed New RE Policy is introduced, according to the new proposal, i.e. Net Billing policy, the generation of energy generated from Renewable Energy sources will be hampered. General Citizens of the state, as well as business / industrial consumers who want to generate energy for their own use through Renewable Energy sources, will be highly de-motivated, it is also against the basic right of energy generation, and thousands of businessmen who are dealing with Renewable Energy Source equipment and millions of people who depend on such professionals will suddenly become unemployed. 

Since we have now decided to adopt a democratic approach to oppose this proposed new Renewable Energy policy, from December 7 th 2019, Myself along with Mr. Amit Deotale, Director Green Life Solutions Pvt. Ltd. Nagpur and Mr. Pankaj Gade of Ishaan Energy Savers Nagpur will be starting the Hunger Strike from December 7th 2019 at Diksha Bhumi Square, Nagpur. 

This topic is not merely limited to any individual or business, it is a very serious issue dealing with Renewable Energy sources and fast running conventional energy sources. In addition to pollution, environmental degradation, the basic right of energy conservation and generation of the general public is hampered. Conservation of Renewable Energy Sources is also an urgent need of the hour. 

We request your great Media Publication House, it is very important to give this movement a lot of broad and thorough publicity so that the general citizens of the state, the state government and the industry at the grassroots level can understand it very intensely. 

There is no doubt that the media is a very effective pillar of democracy and you are carrying out your responsibilities in full force. Equally, we request you to help the subject in every aspect and interest of the state, industry and the common man with great publicity and effective publicity to bring about a renewed boost to the Renewable Energy Source Sector.

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