Staff Reporter

Even discoms have expressed “concern” over the proposal

Our consent was not taken, say discoms

They say ToD is feasible only for industries

NEW DELHI: The campaign against time-of-day (ToD) metering in the domestic sector as proposed by the Delhi Government’s Power Department is gaining momentum. Even the Capital’s power distribution companies have expressed “concern” over the proposal to implement ToD.

Piqued by the Power Department’s proposal and its assertion that ToD will “benefit consumers”, residents’ welfare associations are already on the warpath. Lashing out at the move as a “ploy” to saddle consumers with inflated bills, the RWAs under the banner of United RWAs’ Joint Action [URJA] have initiated a series of meetings with the Delhi Electricity Regulatory Commission to resolve the issue.

While the RWAs suspecting the complicity of the discoms in the proposal have been critical in their reactions, the discoms claim they are “also concerned by the Power Department’s decision”.

“Contrary to the general perception, the discoms are not in favour of ToD metering scheme – an initiative supposedly to help conserve energy and manage load during peak hours. All the three discoms have voiced their concerns against the ToD metering scheme to the State Government and the DERC,” sources said.

Trying to set the record straight, the discoms, which have always been in the line of fire, claim: “Our consent was not taken before initiating the pilot for ToD metering in one area each of BYPL, BRPL and NDPL. The ToD metering scheme has not yet been cleared by the DERC.”

Accepting that the discoms have conveyed their concerns, sources in DERC however declined to comment on the issue. “The matter will be addressed when the tariff orders are passed,” they said.

The ToD metering scheme has been proposed by The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) and supported by Delhi Transco Limited.

“Though BSES meters are ToD-compliant, those of NDPL will require software up-gradation. Also, the meters for domestic customers are read bi-monthly; under the ToD metering scheme, the consumption of electricity will have to be read three times in a day, which in turn will put a strain on manpower and resources,” sources said, explaining why the discoms have joined the widespread refrain against ToD metering.

“The discoms, like the consumers, are of the opinion that ToD remains feasible for industrial purposes and cannot be implemented in the domestic sector,” sources said.

While the Power Department claims that consumers will be able to bring down their bills by consuming electricity priced at a lower slab during non-peak hours, the RWAs and the discoms have expressed scepticism over the premise.