• Odisha:Ball for Electricity Duty Act tweak starts rolling

    The State Government is all set to promulgate an ordinance to amend the Odisha Electricity (Duty) Act, 1961 to bring clarity in certain provisions and revise the duty structure for certain category of consumers.

    The Energy Department has sent a Cabinet memorandum to the State Government along with a draft of the ordinance for approval.

    Justifying the need for immediate amendments in the Act, the department said the State Government is incurring huge losses due to the ceiling on electricity duty levied on ad valorem basis (at percentage of energy charges).

    As per Odisha Electricity Duty (OED) Act, there is a ceiling on electricity duty. As a result, the State Government is losing out on revenue front.

    “As electricity duty (ED) is now collected on ad valorem basis, the ED for some of the industrial consumers is limited to 40 paise per unit though it comes to around 63 paise per unit,” said the Cabinet memorandum.

    Stating that the Odisha Electricity Regulatory Commission is amending the power tariff in each financial year which automatically enhances the electricity duty, the memorandum said collection of ED is restricted to 40 paise per unit despite the fact that tax should be higher in view of the enhanced tariff.

    Besides, the proposed amendment in the OED Act will enable the Energy Department to collect arrear ED which has been estimated to the tune of `2.5 crore.

    Under the existing Act, there is no provision for levying ED on electricity consumed through open access system by consumers of the State. The tax loss on this account is estimated at `3.33 crore every month. This could be saved after the proposed amendment, sources in the department said.

    As the existing provisions for recovery of ED through certificate case is very cumbersome, the department proposed a special mode of recovery in line with Section 51 of the Value Added Tax Act, 2004.

    “It is necessary to take immediate steps for bringing such amendments as the Assembly is not in session,” the memorandum said.

    Earlier, the State Cabinet had approved the memorandum for amendment of OED Act on September 29, 2015 and March 11, 2016. Accordingly, an amendment Bill was placed in the Assembly during the Budget session. But this could not be passed as the House was prorogued.

    Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has also given his consent to bring this proposal to the Cabinet. Tavon Young Womens Jersey

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