The common man is threatened with heavy penalty and disconnection if found guilty of electricity theft, but the same rule is not applied by the UT administration to its own departments.
Two of UT's important buildings - the secretariat and additional deluxe building - in Sector 9 have been found using electricity far more than the sanctioned load. According to information provided under RTI Act by the administration to city-based activist RK Garg, the sanctioned load of additional deluxe building as per the electricity bill number 65411 of around Rs 8 lakh is 540KW. The actual load, however, as per the list of electrical load used by various departments in the building furnished under RTI is 1,285KW.
Similarly, the connected load of electricity of UT secretariat according to bill number 46663 amounting to Rs 10.6 lakh is 938KW, whereas the actual load used is 1,455KW. Not only this, for both the buildings, the bills are raised on average basis, which is not allowed as per order number 7490 dated August 23, 2006, issued by UT chief engineer.
Both the buildings are house to as many as 38 offices of different departments, including adviser office, home secretary office, finance department, police headquarter and director public instructions (DPI). The actual load of the home secretary office and finance department is 231KW and 120KW, respectively, and 130KW in case of UT chief architect office. The electricity load of IG police headquarter tops the list with 800KW.
By not declaring the actual electricity load, the administration has flouted the norms. According to the rules, proceedings are initiated against the offenders for failure to declare power load under Section 126 of the Indian Electricity Act, 2003. The Act provides for imposing fine at the rate equal to one-and-a-half times the tariff rates applicable for the particular category.
According to sources, the actual load of electricity is much higher than the declared load in majority of the government buildings.
When contacted, UT superintending engineer MP Singh said they were responsible only for the installation of electricity meters in the buildings and that it was the job of electrical section of the engineering department to keep a watch on overloading.
UT superintending engineer (electrical) Rajinder Singh refused to comment, saying their responsibility was limited to clearing the bills.
RK Garg, meanwhile, called for immediate remedial action. "Such working of administration encourages introspection to cleanse the system and top officials should act immediately."