Friday, October 30, 2020
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Telangana: Are prepaid electricity meters really required?

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TR Madhavan
Self employed, Social Service, Citizen Journalist, Blogger

Reports are under circulation in the media that, Prepaid electricity meters are ready to be installed. Officials of TRANSCO informed that the work of installation of electricity meters has been stopped on account of elections in order to escape the wrath of the public.

A decision was taken to install these meters in the entire state but due to the sudden decision of dissolution of Assembly, political leaders requested the government to postpone it since it would have cast negative effect on the people.

The political leaders who stopped installation of the prepaid meters say that if the meters are changed after the elections, there is no problem.

It may be mentioned that the after the installation of these meters, consumers will be able to use electric current to the extent of the amount paid.

When the amounts get exhausted, the electric supply will automatically be disconnected.

It is reported that these prepaid meters have already been handed over to the contractors who will fix them in the houses. (Source)

As of today the consumer haven’t got any information/notice related to changing of meter, whether any amount as deposit to be paid for the change being made or prepaid tariff details from TSSPDCL.

On reading the above report, it’s opine that, it should not be implemented because most of the houses have installed inverters because of which consumer will not be able to know it’s power failure or no balance issue.

It should be as per choice of consumer and not as per the will and wish of the government or TSSPDCL to opt for prepaid or postpaid billing.

As there’s a different tariff calculation from 0 to additional units. The power consumers are unaware of the following –  What type of tariff plans are approved by the Telangana Electricity Regulatory is not known? Prepaid facility being introduced will there be a concessional tariff offer for the advance payment? If the amount paid is more and consumption is less, will the balance amount adjusted at time of next recharge?

Such installation will put multi storied residential complex residents welfare associations as well as house/flat owners who lease out the premises to hardship. As the consumption of power is high in the common meter of the building and monthly maintenance charges are not being paid in time by the inmates, how will they make calculation and prepay the for the entire month?

After seeing the image of prepaid meters in the media, a doubt in the minds of the residents especially of residential complexes that, the existing meters fitted in panel boards are smaller size, do the panel boards have to be changed?

As the election campaign is underway, the power consumers opine that, the contestants and contesting parties should give an assurance that, it will be left to the consumer whether to go for prepaid or retain postpaid system or it will made to keep it in abeyance.

Finally, it’s felt the domestic power consumers cannot bear the burden of any charges or levies for the change of power meters and prepaid tariff payments, it’s in the public interest the domestic power consumers be kept off from such exercise.

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TR Madhavan
Self employed, Social Service, Citizen Journalist, Blogger
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