Lucknow: The dismal power situation in the state led to walkouts in the Uttar Pradesh Assembly even as Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav accused the Congress-led central government of not cooperating in tiding over the crisis.
In reply to supplementaries on a question related to power, Akhilesh, who also holds the power portfolio, said that though a number of MOUs were signed during the previous government, not a single unit was set up and alleged serious irregularities in the department.
The CM said that power was bought at higher rates to meet the demand which has led to debt and banks were also not giving loans.
He, however, assured that his government would not let the common people and farmers suffer on this count and only the rates for big industrial units would be raised.
If required alternative sources of energy would also be tapped besides improving generation, distribution and cutting line losses, he said.
Yadav said that concrete steps would be undertaken in this sector as the government would have to face the public in 2014 and also in 2017.
He, however, regretted that the centre has not helped in providing coal linkages which were essential and blamed the Congress of stalling the Dadri project (started in the previous SP government) which, if completed, would have solved the problem.
Earlier, replying to a question by BJP and Congress MLAs, minister for PWD and irrigation Shivpal Singh Yadav blamed the previous BSP government for buying power to meet the demand at higher rates and leaving behind a debt of Rs 25,000 crore.
Alleging that there had been corruption all round, he said had that money been utilised on power generation it would have been of help.
On the claims of the previous government of working on making the state self-reliant in power sector, he said that not a single MW additional power was generated.
This saw the BSP members led by their leader Swami Prasad Maurya taking to the feet demanding a debate and shouting that the minister was misleading the house which was protested by the treasury benches and BSP staged a walkout, raising anti-government slogans.
The BJP also staged a walkout expressing dissatisfaction over the reply.