The half a dozen police stations set up by state-run utility MSEDCL to probe electricity theft cases across Maharashtra will be closed and matters pending with them will be moved to local police stations, a senior official has said. An order to this effect was issued by the home department on February 22, he said, adding these special police stations are facing closure due to logistical reasons.
The Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Ltd (MSEDCL) started six police stations – in Kalyan, Nashik, Pune, Jalna, Latur and Nagpur – in 2006 to investigate the cases of electricity theft. Over 1.6 lakh electricity theft cases, involving Rs 19,170.59 lakh, were registered at these police stations since their inception, the officer said.
“Since the distance of the police station was very far from the actual place of offence, an investigating official was not able to work swiftly,” he said. Reaching the place of offence, making `panchnamas’ (recording observation) and starting investigation was a big challenge, he added.
However, there was nothing wrong in the functioning of these police stations. Officials posted at these stations had detected thefts of 59.43 million units of electricity, the officer added. As per the data available till December 2017, these police stations had solved 68,099 cases, while 87,420 power theft cases were pending with them, the official.
“The government has decided to shutdown these police stations. All such cases will be now be registered (with some of the regular) police stations in the district concerned,” Surendra Pandey, Additional Director General of Police and Director (Security and Enforcement) of MSEB Holding Company, told PTI. The cases registered with the special police stations will be transfered to the regular ones within the next two months, Pandey said.