An amendment to the Electricity (Rights of Consumers) Rules, 2020, has been passed by the Centre, in order to make two important changes in the current power system. The first change is related to the Time of Day (ToD) Tariff System, the second one is associated with the rationalization of smart metering provisions. As the name suggests, the Time of Day (ToD) Tariff System is one wherein the consumer will not be charged the same rate for electricity all the day, but the price they will pay for the power consumed will be according to the time of the day.
Tariffs during the solar hours, which will be a duration of 8 hours in a day, as specified by the State Electricity Regulatory Commission, shall be 10 to 20 percent less than the normal tariff, while on the other hand, the tariff during the peak hours will be 10 to 20 percent higher. The ToD tariffs will be applicable for commercial and industrial consumers having maximum demand of 10 KW and above, from 1st April, 2024. And for all the other consumers, except agricultural consumers, they shall be applicable latest from 1st April, 2025.
The ToD tariff shall be made effective immediately after the installation of smart metres.
Union Power & New and Renewable Energy Minister, RK Singh, said, “The ToD tariffs which are separate tariffs for peak hours, solar hours, and normal hours, send price signals to consumers to manage their load according to the tariff. With awareness and effective utilization of the ToD tariff mechanism, consumers can reduce their electricity bills. Since solar power is cheaper, the tariffs during the solar hours will be less, so the consumer benefits. During non-solar hours, thermal and hydro-power as well as gas-based capacity is used, and their costs are higher than that of solar power, this will be reflected in ToD tariff”.
“Now, consumers can plan their consumption in order to reduce their power costs, planning more activities during solar hours when when power costs are less”, explained Singh.