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More woes for common man as BWSSB proposes tariff hike

First BESCOM hiked staff salary, raised power rates to cover up; now the BWSSB, having sunk into debt of Rs 1,300 crore, is doing the same to generate income

After the BESCOM hiked salaries of their employees and ended up taxing the common man by hiking electricity rates, now the BWSSB has also proposed a hike in tariffs. While the water corporation body is reeling under a debt of Rs 1,300 crore, they claim that the ideal solution would be to hike tariffs to generate income.

This however spells bad news for the common man, as citizens would have to cough up at least 12 per cent more for water bills. Citing the power hikes as their main expense, the BWSSB claimed that they end up spending almost 50 per cent of their revenue in paying power bills.

Off balance?
"If we are going to spend half our revenue by paying the electricity board, how will we ever be able to repay our debts? The BBMP has a variety of ways to generate income, but I have only one product - water. We are justified in demanding a tariff hike," P B Ramamurthy, chairman, BWSSB said.

He further added that since Bangalore follows a slab system of bill payment, the common man will only have to pay as per consumption."We are in debt and there is a need to hike tariffs to increase our income. Besides, the BESCOM and the ESCOMS have been hiking the power rates for three years consecutively, why are we being denied this right for the last decade?" Ramamurthy asked.

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