Sunday, April 15, 2007

REL needs Power for its Metro Rail - that's the REAL Shortage !

I guess after reading this headline you've figured out why there is a "shortage" !!

Consider this...
1. Tata generates 1777 MW
2. REL generates 500 MW.
3. REL/BEST get nearly all of their energy requirement from Tata/REL genration only. Total is 2,277 MW (1777 + 500).
4. Vitaran is supposedly supplying 150 MW to Mulund/Bhandup/etc.
5. Hence, Mumbai's total demand-supply is 2,427 MW (2277 + 150).
6. Last summer (April-June 2006) there was no "load shedding" in REL/BEST area.
7. REL serves 25 Lakh consumers in Mumbai.
8. BEST serves 10 Lakh consumers in Mumbai.
9. Tata serves 24,000 consumers in Mumbai.

Now, consider this also...
1. REL projects a 5% increase in energy consumption (in its own MYT petition).
2. BEST projects a less than 5% increase in energy consumption (in its own MYT petition).
3. MERC/REL says Mumbai's requirement has gone to 2,700 MW, an increase of 273 MW, or 11% !

Sounds illogical, right?

If the 2 major suppliers to the city are saying that their energy consumption is going up only 5%, then how come the GAP has grown to 11%??

Assuming that 5% (120 MW) is the normal growth year-on-year, where is the need for the extra 153 MW coming from??

No points for guessing...

This GAP is requirement of REL for constructing and operating its own Metro Rail project.

REL's Metro Rail gets under way this year, partial completion estimated in 2-3 years (i.e. near about 2009-2010).

We were right, since REL is NOT separating its accounts, we cannot figure out what's going on!!

Incidentally, REL's own MYT Petition (upto March 31, 2010) does not show any income from electricity charges receivable from Metro Rail project.

So they're going to be using electricity that YOU and I and the rest of Mumbai city will be paying for through our hard-earned money !!

That's the REAL shortage ... think about it ...anyone has another explanation ??

Well ... and that's how I feel ...

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Can MERC approve electricity rates higher than what was Petitioned?

See what MERC has done in BEST's case. BEST petitioned for rates (at the highest slab), ranging from Rs. 5.70 to Rs. 7.20 per unit. MERC has approved rates of Rs. 7.22 and Rs. 9.97 .. by adding another "Reliability Charge."

None of this was brought to the Public's notice. Nothing was discussed in the Public Hearings (I attended all 4 public hearings: Vitaran, TPC, REL, BEST).

Everyday we read in the newspapers, how these "poor, hapless" electricity companies may have to purchase electricity at much higher rates (Rs. 7, Rs. 8 per unit, etc.) in order to "save" Mumbai from Load shedding.

Please correct me if I'm wrong here ...

As I understand it, MERC can fix the tariff - and that too, ONLY after a Public hearing on the same - with 21 days' notice, etc. etc. You all know this by now.

Hence, even if TPC/REL now buy at rates that are higher than what was petitioned by them, how can MERC approve (the resultant) higher consumer rates WITHOUT calling for a public hearing first ??

According to me, MERC can only approve what was in the Petition, as that was what was discussed (Ha!) with the Public.

Got it??

I suspect this is the REAL reason for all this talk of higher purchase rates - just so that MERC can play Santa Claus and "force" these companies to supply only at MYT Petition rates .. and these "poor" disgruntled guys will "grudgingly agree." Exactly, what was done in BEST's case - the same will happen to Tata and REL consumers also!

They all really must take us for fools. But there was a famous saying about, "not being able to fool ALL the people ALL the time."

Think about it.

Feel like doing something about it? Send an email to MERC (see below for text matter).

Well ... and that's how I feel ...

Here's the DRAFT for the email to MERC - CUT AND PASTE IN your "New Mail" or "Compose" window. Please do not forget to add your name, address, email ID, at the end of the text.

Mail to:
Copy to:,,,,



The Secretary,
Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Commission

Sub: How can the Hon'ble MERC approve rates that were not discussed in the Public Hearings?
Dear Madam,

I have read in the newspapers that electricity companies are now going to charge rates that are higher than what was mentioned in their MYT Petitions.
I am concerned about the violation of the sanctity of the public hearing process and would like to bring to your attention that Tariff can be fixed only after discussing the proposed rates with the public. The rates approved for BEST have not been discussed in public.

The Hon'ble Commission has just concluded these MYT public hearings and I am opposed to any hike, as the rates have just been hiked only 6 months back, in October 2006.

I request the Hon'ble MERC to NOT approve the proposed rates, especially any new (undiscussed) rates.

Thank you.



Copies to:
Shri Vilasrao Deshmukh, Chief Minister, Maharashtra
Shri Sushil Kumar Shinde, Union Minister of Power
Shri Anil Razdan, Secretary, Ministry of Power
Shri A.K. Basu, Chairman CERC

Monday, April 09, 2007

Advertisement by-lines - the whole truth !

I've always wondered about how Ad agencies come up with by-lines for various companies and the products and services.

Maybe the ones that eventually see the light of day are only the half-truth (Ardh Satya!)

Here's my view on what would be the whole truth .. and nothing but the truth? .. I've been reading up on too many legal issues of late ;-)

So, here goes.. read this as ...

The Company/Product...
... followed by the official by-line ...
.. and then my version of the whole truth .. enjoy!

The tyres we race are the tyres you buy
… so don’t complain if they look worn out !

ICICI Prudential
We cover you at every step in life
... but once you die …

DSP ML Equity Fund
Discovering Value
…err, that is to say, we’re still looking, haven’t found it yet!

Domino’s Pizza
The Pizza delivery experts only if we could be the “cooking” experts …

The Ice-cream of Juhu
So please excuse the grains of sand!

Lakshya Advertising
Think. Aim. Achieve.
… now if only WE could that ourselves …

Manikchand’s Oxyrich
For those who never compromise
... from those who DO !

First bank in the world to introduce ATMs
… and we still haven’t got it right !

SBI Banks
Pure banking. Nothing else.
What? …you expected more??

Ultratech Cement
The Engineer’s choice
but we actually need to be the Builder’s choice!

HDFC Standard Life Insurance
Sar Utha Ke Jiyo
Magar neeche “fine print” mat padho …

MTNL hai to sahi hai
Boss, sahi hai ... sahi banaya …

Happiness begins with BRU
... and ends in acidity

BPL Mobile
Live wire free
We haven’t got too many strings attached either !

Kal tumhara hai.
Aaj ki baat mat karo.

Vijay Sales
Where Mumbai shops.
Where? Don’t ask us? We don’t know!

Air Deccan
Got it? Just fly – and don’t ask for more!

Singapore International School, Mumbai
Ready for the world. Ready for the Future.
Now, if only we could be ready for Mumbai…

Bachat Mera Adhikaar! Subhiksha Mera Abhimaan!
Lekin itna lambaa byline kisko rahega dhyaan ?

No. 1 Brand recommended by Dentists
They may recommend it, but do they use it? Naah !

The Complete Man.
If he’s already so complete, where do WE fit in??

HDFC Home Loans
With you. Right through.
All the way. Till you don’t pay up.

Dr. Batra’s Multispeciality Homeopathy
Where patients come first
.. and are taken in last, after all the VIPs!

Kohinoor Electronics Store
Your PriceLESS stores.
Your Price, Less stores. Our Price, More Stores.

India Post
Anytime. Anywhere.
That’s why your letters get lost!

Union Bank of India
Good people to bank with.
Tell us who they are, and we will also bank with them!

We understand your world.
But our own world is a maze!

Big Bazaar
Isse Sasta Aur Kahin Nahi.
Hum Price ki baat nahi kar rahe hai.. saste quality ki baat hai …

SONY MONY Electronics
Bada dil. Badi Jagah
Bada Ad. Badi Price.
Because you are worth more.
.. to us, in expanding our database.

Bajaj Fans
Incredibly Fast
…in wearing out.

Club Mahindra Holidays
Fun. Family. Forever.
Forget. Facilities. Fast.

The sweet taste of purity missing from our products

and, to conclude, with my pet peeve ...

Electricity Conservation Drive
I Will. Mumbai Will.
Paying their Bills, there’s nothing left to “Will”

Well ... and that's how I feel ...