Kerala hikes water charges by 90 per cent

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Thiruvananthapuram, Sept 24 (UNI) The Kerala Cabinet today decided to hike the drinking water charges by an average 90 per cent to mobilise an additional revenue of Rs 135 crore a year.

Briefing newspersons here after a meeting of the state Cabinet, Chief Minister V S Achuthanandan said that up to ten kilo liters of water would be provided free of cost to the consumers of the Kerala Water Authority who were in the Below Poverty Line (BPL) category.

As part of the decision to revise the water charges, the arrers of water charges for the BPL category up to August 31 this year would be written off, he added.

Later, Water Resources Minister N K Premachandran said the hike in the tariff, ranging from 20 per cent to 138 per cent for various slabs, would come into force with retrospective effect from September one this year.

There would not be any hike for charges up to five KL of water a month in the domestic category. However, there would be an average 90 per cent hike for those who consumed five to 30 KL. The hike was up to 138 per cent for thos who consumed above 30 KL.

He said that corresponding hike was also effected for the non-demostic and industrial consumers.

UNI CR1241

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