Counting gadgets, not electricity usage
VOLUNTARY LOAD DISCLOSURE
Srinagar, June 24: Power Development Department (PDD) pamphlets asking consumers to come forward and disclose by July 9 electricity load under Voluntary Load Disclosure Scheme (VLDS) have put consumers in a tight spot. However, there is no mention about whether consumers after disclosing their load would have to pay extra money or not.
“The PDD should make it clear why we need to disclose the load?” asked Zahoor Ahmed of Baghat, Barzulla.
“I own a three storied house and have installed twelve fans, but all of these don’t run simultaneously. We hardly use three fans at a time. Similarly there are many electric appliances which are used occasionally. The pamphlets which have reached us state that we should mention each and every appliance that is present in our home,” he said. “Once we disclose the appliances present in our home they will make us pay through our nose. PDD is just trying to find ways and means to extract more and more money from consumers.”
Calling the scheme as irrational and anti-people which will make customer fetch double the amount they are paying, Kashmir Centre for Social and Development Studies (KCSDS) member, Shakeel Qalandar said, “ It is an act of recovering more money from the consumers. The government’s claim that it is a reform is a hoax as it does not have the potential to curb pilferage. On the contrary it is act of recovering more money from common consumers.”
Puncturing the claims of the PDD, Qalandar said, “In the metered areas, scheme shall have lesser impact as the consumers under metered areas shall continue to pay as per meter reading. The consumers residing in the metered areas shall have to calculate their optimum load after taking into consideration all gadgets and lightening installed in their houses and subsequently shall have to go for agreement up to 60 % of the calculated load. Keeping in view the optimum load at any given period of time, load of any house hold does not exceed 20 to 30 percent.”
Calling the scheme anti people and flawed, Qalandar said that every consumer who resides in towns and city shall have to declare load above 1 kilo watt load. “Below that load will not be acceptable. There are also no provisions for people living under below poverty line under this scheme. Any consumer consuming less than one kilowatt of load shall be unnecessarily subjected to pay more.”
President of Kashmir Traders and Manufacturers Association (KTMA), Muhammad Shafi Khan accused the department of hiding their inefficiency in the grab of launching this scheme, “What was the fun of installing meters by the department? We are paying according to the meters. Why should we declare the load voluntarily? They actually want to hide their inefficiency. This is absolutely irresponsible move.”
Khan also said that department has failed to prevent loss of 60 percent in Transmission and distribution. “They should not blame us for the loss. Corruption is there. They even charge us 40 rupees for every kilowatt as a basic connection fee. Then they should stop that also,” he added.
President, Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industries (KCCI) Abdul Hamid Punjabi accused the department of harassment, “They are making us scapegoat. Corruption is rampant in the department. Without addressing their own problem, they are harassing us. They already know what the load of the households is. What is fun of going for volunteer load disclosure? They have even failed to provide us 24 hour power supply according to agreement.”
When contacted, Chief Engineer PDD Muzaffar Ahmed Matoo, “We want to devise our system .what is requirement in a particular area. We want to know the actual need of transformers installed at different places.”
On the question of what is need of volunteer disclosure as meters are already installed, Matoo said, ‘Meter records only energy in particular time. In terms of power, there needs some evaluation”.
If consumers fail to disclose their load by July 9 they could face huge penalties, officials said.
Lastupdate on : Sun, 24 Jun 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Sun, 24 Jun 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Mon, 25 Jun 2012 00:00:00 IST
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