Distribution companies (DISCOMs) across the country owed renewable generators ₹109.08 billion (~$1.49 billion) in overdue payments (excluding dues under disputes) spread across 497 invoices at the end of August, as per the data released by the Ministry of Power’s payment ratification and analysis portal PRAAPTI.
According to the data released by the portal, the outstanding dues to renewable generators stood at ₹4.71 billion (64.5 million), with ₹123.7 million (~$1.69 million) under dispute.
The numbers are slightly higher in August. At the end of July, the DISCOMs owed renewable generators nearly ₹103.11 billion (~$1.4 billion) in overdue payment (excluding dues under dispute) spread across 579 invoices.
The data released by the portal also showed that 66 DISCOMs owed ₹1.19 trillion (~$16.44 billion) in overdue payments spread across 19,942 invoices to power generators at the end of August 2020. Compared to July, the numbers have increased a bit. In July, 65 DISCOMs owed power generators ₹1.16 trillion (~$16.07 billion) in overdue payments spread across 19,195 invoices.
The DISCOMs paid ₹111.52 billion (~$1.53 billion) against the overdue amount, which marked a 25% decrease compared to ₹149.09 billion (~$2.05 billion) paid by DISCOMs in July. The DISCOMs paid an amount of ₹16.35 billion (~$223.9 million) against the outstanding amount, a decrease of 4% compared to ₹17 billion (~$232.8 million) paid by the DISCOMs at the end of July. The outstanding amount stood at ₹126.3 billion (~1.74 billion) at the end of the month.
Even in the backdrop of such huge payments overdue, the government has suggested rules for the late payment surcharge payable by DISCOMs to a generating company in case of delay in payment of monthly charges beyond the due date. Earlier, it was proposed to keep the surcharge at less than 12% annually.
The state of Rajasthan recorded the highest backlog with ₹371.8 billion (~$5.09 billion) in overdue payments, out of which ₹340.1 billion (~$4.65 billion) have been overdue for more than 60 days.
Tamil Nadu followed closely with ₹196.5 billion (~$2.69 billion) in pending payment, out of which ₹177.08 billion (~$2.43 billion) have been unpaid for more than 60 days. Uttar Pradesh was another state with an overdue amount of ₹118.29 billion (₹1.62 billion), out of which ₹86.26 billion (~$1.18 billion) have been overdue for more than 60 days.
The report termed Gujarat, Bihar, Himachal Pradesh, West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, and Tripura as ‘best’ states in terms of ease of payments by the DISCOMs. Punjab and Meghalaya were termed as ‘good’ states.
Further, the government portal rated Nagaland, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Telangana, Karnataka, Odisha, Kerala, Jharkhand, Goa, Delhi, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, and Jammu and Kashmir as the ‘worst’ states for ease of payments by the DISCOMs.
According to the portal’s data, Adani Green, NLC India Limited, and Tata Power company were owed amounts worth nearly ₹12.01 billion, ₹14.42 billion, and ₹21.09 billion, respectively.
Rakesh is a staff reporter at Mercom India. Prior to joining Mercom, he worked in many roles as a business correspondent, assistant editor, senior content writer, and sub-editor with bcfocus.com, CIOReview/Silicon India, Verbinden Communication, and Bangalore Bias. Rakesh holds a Bachelor’s degree in English from Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU). More articles from Rakesh Ranjan.