Consumers cry foul over power bills

Domestic power consumers in Tiruchi are in a shock over high bills this cycle.

After missing a cycle (once in two months), Tangedco has begun assessment of domestic and commercial power consumption in the city. Post-assessment, a section of consumers complain of exorbitant charges levied by the corporation.

Several consumers say the bill amount has almost doubled. The method followed by the assessors is vague and lacks clarity on whether the slab rate system has been followed and the benefits passed on to consumers while calculating consumption charges for the last two cycles.

Many have paid their bills as per the methods suggested by Tangedco in May and July when the intense lockdown was in force. While some got to know the amount after sending a self-assessed meter reading to officials, others paid the charges of the same period of the previous year.

However, they contend that the paid amount has not been taken into account while calculating the power consumption bills.

“The bimonthly power consumption bill of my domestic connection hovers around ₹800. But, it has doubled this time. With almost nil income due to impact of lockdown, I do not know how to pay the exorbitant bill,” says P. Sivakumar, a resident of Srirangam.

A trader in Thillai Nagar, who has a commercial connection for his home appliances showroom, says he has been asked to pay ₹73,000 as against the average bill amount of ₹40,000. “The showroom was locked for two months due to lockdown. But, we have received a huge bill. It is a big burden particularly when our business is yet to get customers,” says the trader.

When contacted, a senior Tangedco official in Tiruchi says the corporation has been following a lenient approach in assessment and collection process due to lockdown restrictions. No consumer will be charged more than the actual power consumption. If consumers have complaints on assessment and adjustment of bills, they can approach the assistant engineers concerned for corrections.

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Printable version | Sep 20, 2021 8:58:08 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Tiruchirapalli/consumers-cry-foul-over-power-bills/article35424524.ece

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