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Pipe dreams

Andhra Pradesh's decision to allow power generation using imported gas could have far-reaching implications

State governments doling out cheap power is commonplace. During election time, they even promise free power — and we’re used to that, too. Now, here’s a government that’s making promises at the other end of the spectrum — expensive power — and, what is even more surprising is that it is being welcomed with open arms. The Andhra Pradesh Electricity Regulatory Commission (APERC) has recently cleared an initiative that will offer consumers electricity at a steep ₹9-11 a unit, three times higher than the average pooled cost (₹3 a unit). Mind you, this is the same administration that gives free electricity to farmers. So, just what’s going on?