Electricity bills can now be paid at select post offices too in the city. On Monday, the service was launched at the Anna Nagar post office.
Consumers residing in any part of the city can make the payment by producing the electricity meter reading card at the post offices.
They will be issued receipts. A service charge of Rs.5 per bill would be collected by the Department of Posts for the online payment facility.
Finance secretary K. Gnanadesikan, who launched the service, lauded the efforts of the Tamil Nadu Electricity Board and the Department of Posts for introducing a system under which the bill payment process would be quicker.
TNEB Chairman C. P. Singh said that to start with, the Anna Nagar post office and Anna Road Head Post Office would accept payments towards electricity bills.
Depending on the response, the facility would be offered at other post offices across the State.
Highlighting the other bill payment facilities such as the Any Time Payment machines and net banking, he said that about 40,000 consumers make use of the online payment mechanisms every month in the city.
M.S.Ramanujan, Postmaster General, Chennai City Region, said that of the 250 post offices in Chennai, 150 had been computerised. The TNEB bill payment facility would be extended to all post offices that have been computerised in the city within a month.
The service would be available at the remaining post offices in Chennai in three months.
T.Murthy, Postmaster General (Business Development), Tamil Nadu Circle, said the Department of Posts is in discussion with other government agencies such as Chennai Corporation and Chennai Metrowater to collect payment of property tax and water and sewerage tax.
Pointing out that post offices have become a hub for sales of various retail products, he said there has been an increase in revenue through the sales of several products such as gold coins, applications for Civil Services examinations of the Union Public Service Commission, postal identity cards and railway ticket booking.
For instance, the revenue through sales of gold coins across 100 post offices in the State has increased from Rs.18 lakh in 2008-09 to Rs.1.06 crore till January this fiscal, the officials said.
The officials expect nearly 200 consumers of the TNEB to make use of the new facility every day.