Srinagar: Residents of Rainawari area here staged a protest against installation of smart electricity meters in their area.
Scores of locals, mostly women, assembled on roads against the move to install smart meters in the area. The protestors blocked the main road of the area triggering traffic jams in the vicinity.
The protesters said that given their financially weak background, they are unable to make ends meet their ends. They fear that smart meters will end up increasing their monthly electricity bill.
“Most of the locals here are doing menial jobs, and how can they afford to foot the bill generated by smart meters. The government should consider the poor people in society,” said a female protester.
The protestors said that the hike in cooking gas and other daily items has already made life difficult for them.
“We hope that officials will consider our issues as well without making us suffer. We have had no electricity since yesterday, and amid the holy month of Ramadhan, we are made to suffer,” said another protestor.
The protesters said that they are ready to pay flat rate. “Everyone is not rich enough to pay huge bills for electricity. Most of us pay flat rate which is affordable for everyone. There should be some provision for poor people so that they can also get some respite and will not need to hit the streets,” the protestors said
Over the past few weeks, multiple localities across Srinagar protested against the installation of smart meters. Chief Engineer, Kashmir Power Distribution Corporation Limited, has maintained that despite protests, they would go ahead with the smart meter project.