Delhi government rolls out amnesty scheme for power consumers

To benefit those accused of stealing power, meter-tampering.

By: Express News Service | New Delhi | Published: August 17, 2015 12:54:26 am
delhi govt, AAP, Arvind kejriwal, kejriwal govt, AAP delhi, power consumer, Delhi Electricity Regulatory Commission, DERC, delhi power, delhi electricity, delhi news, indian express An estimated 1.4-lakh consumers are expected to benefit from the scheme. (Archive)

The Delhi government has rolled out a one-time amnesty scheme for power consumers. Approved by the Delhi Electricity Regulatory Commission (DERC), the city’s power regulator, the scheme is for those accused of stealing power, tampering with meters or having illegal connections.

Under the scheme, all criminal/civil proceedings will be withdrawn against those who voluntarily disclose that they had tampered with meters. For this, the power distribution companies, or discoms, have been told to tie up with area legislators and organise special camps.

An estimated 1.4-lakh consumers are expected to benefit from the scheme. Following are the benefits under the scheme for different categories of residents:

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1. Residents of JJ clusters
They will have to pay Rs 250 per month for the period they have not paid their power dues. The late-payment surcharge has been waived. They can pay their dues in installment over six months.

2. Power theft
This category is called Direct Theft Bill settlement. For domestic consumers with an approved load of up to 11 kiloVolt (kV) who have been booked for thefts, the late-payment surcharge has been waived. Two-third of the dues will be waived if the accused settles the amount in one go. Sixty per cent of the dues will be waived if payment is made in installments.

3. Meter-tampering
The terms of waiver will be same as those extended to consumers accused of power theft: Late-payment surcharge waived. Two-third of dues to be waived if accused settles amount in one go. Sixty per cent of dues to be waived if payment is made in installments.

4. Unauthorised use of electricity
No late-payment surcharge; 50 per cent of billed amount will be converted into the correct category or separate meter will be provided for non-domestic use.

5. Disconnected users
For consumers who fall under the category of “disconnected users” with outstanding dues, consumers who want a new connection or those who want to clear outstanding dues, the late-payment surcharge has been waived. They can pay their bill in four installments. Meter will be installed on payment of first installment.

In June, the Delhi government’s ambitious one-time amnesty scheme for consumers booked for electricity theft was shot down by the power regulator.

Sources in the DERC said the regulator objected because the discoms wanted to shift their losses on account of the amnesty to consumers.

“Why should consumers bear the losses? The issue has been solved. The discoms are ready to bear the losses on account of the amnesty scheme. Moreover, this scheme is for people who have an approved load of up to 11 kV. The rich do not fall under this category,” a DERC official said.

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