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South locals rue inflated power bills

Even after Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit asking the power distribution companies to examine their billing system, residents of south Delhi are continuing to receive ‘inflated’ power bills.

Residents of Safdarjung Enclave, Lajpat Nagar and other posh areas of south Delhi complained that they were receiving electricity bills running to the tune of Rs 9,000-16,000 for the month of September.

Even in slums, dwellers complained that with a meagre salary, their electricity bills ranged from Rs 2,200-6,500.

A social activist living in Amar Colony, Virender K Gupta, said, ‘Earlier, the bill was around Rs 6,000, but this time I received a bill of Rs 8,300. This is not normal, even if the tariff has been hiked. The  bill should not be so high.’

Three power distribution companies, BSES Rajdhani Power Ltd, BSES Yamuna Power Ltd and Tata Power Delhi Distribution Ltd, are responsible for providing electricity to the residents of Delhi.

Earlier, Tata Power Delhi Distribution Ltd was punished by Delhi Electricity Regulatory Commission (DERC) for the inflated power bills, which the company was unable to rectify.

Some residents have also lodged their grievances and complaints with the Chief Minister’s office, government officials and DISCOM. However, so far, Delhi Chief Minister’s office has not officially responded to the complaints.

On the condition of anonymity, a DISCOM official said, ‘The inflated power bills are not confined to south Delhi only, but in entire Delhi. There are three reasons for it, including around 60 per cent power tariff hike in the last one year, changing of slab system and hottest summer this year in the last 35 years.’

The revised tariff came into effect from 1 July, when DERC increased the domestic power tariff by 34 per cent, including a surcharge of eight per cent for the year 2012-13.

Officials of the DISCOM also blamed the mindset of the people for this hue and cry, as according to them the bills were absolutely normal.
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