ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Power Tariff Scam Gets Bigger at ₹ 50,000 Crore

Did Adani and Essar Groups Over-invoice Power Plant Equipment?

The dimension of the scam relating to inflation of power tariffs by, among other things, over-invoicing imported coal has become considerably bigger. It has now come to light that electricity generating companies are seeking to obtain compensatory tariffs from regulators. In addition, particular firms in the Adani and Essar Groups have allegedly over-invoiced imports of equipment. The total size of the scam is currently estimated at 50,000 crore, if not more.


Paranjoy Guha Thakurta ( is the editor of the Economic & Political Weekly. 

The scale and scope of the scandal relating to the fraudulent inflation of power tariffs by over-invoicing coal imported from Indonesia, and passing on the costs to the consumer has acquired new dimensions (Guha Thakurta and Malik 2016). Over and above the investigations that are being carried out by the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) in the Ministry of Finance on 40-odd companies for allegedly over-invoicing coal imported from Indonesia to the tune of  29,000 crore, there have been certain unrelated developments.

It is now being claimed that power generating companies are attempting to make illicit gains through “compensatory tariffs” awarded by electricity regulators. On top of this, firms in the Adani and Essar groups have been accused of over-invoicing imported power plant equipment.

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