Mumbai: Spiritual organisations will now be treated at par with educational institutes and hospitals while being charged electricity tariff in Maharashtra.
Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Commission (MERC) in its recent order has directed state utility Mahavitaran to consider spiritual organisations, which are `service-oriented` to be treated as public service providers which will lower their power tariff.
Mahavitaran, as per the Commission`s order in August last year, had created a sub-category called `public services` which included organisations like education institutes, hospitals, post offices, public libraries etc., which are charged differential tariff rate which is higher than the average cost of supply, but below that of the commercial category.
Spiritual institutions like Osho International Foundation and Neo Sanyas Foundation had filed petitions before the Bombay High Court seeking the applicability of `public service` category to them.
The court upheld their argument and directed MERC to include the petitioners in the `public service` category.
With this order, the concessional tariff rate applicable to the consumers falling under the public services will now be applicable to service-oriented spiritual organisations as well.
Such spiritual institutions consuming power up to 200 units will now have to pay Rs 5.36 per unit and those consuming above 200 units will have to pay Rs 7.88 per unit.
Similarly, organisations in the high-tension category will have to pay up to Rs 8.21 per unit.
Currently, such institutions are charged between Rs 3.36 and Rs 8.78 per unit for consumption ranging between 0 and 1000 units. For consumption above 1000 units, the tariff is Rs 9.50 per unit.