Power department officials in the city are facing an acute electricity meter crunch. They have several new applicants for the meter, and not enough equipment to deal with the applications.
Most consumers have applied for the meter — even paid the security deposit — yet they have been waiting long for it. Consumers also fear the vigilance raids that the department runs against defaulters.
“In Faridabad, we require over 5,000 meters every month,” M.B. Vaishisht, Director (Operations) at Dakshin Haryana Bijli Vitran Nigam said. “Of them, 2,000 are required against fresh connection; the rest are to replace damaged meters.”
K.C. Agarwal, Executive Engineer at the NIT division of the Nigam, said, “In my division, we require 3,000-4,000 meters at the moment.” Ballabgarh division Executive Engineer M.L. Rohila said his division needed 15,000 meters.
As there are four such divisions in Faridabad circle, the demand is quite high and the supply scarce.
Consumers, on their part, have been running from pillar to post to get their meters installed. “Nigam has not been buying meters as the tenders are lying pending for some time,” Vaishisht said.
Consumers, however, are more worried about the vigilance raids that have become a routine affair for the Nigam’s vigilance wing. Sources said raiding officials impose major part of penalty on consumers.
Sources said that the Nigam, instead of buying meters on its own, has been advising consumers to buy meters from the market.
“We deposited security amount for installation of meter at our house, then we were forced to buy meters from the market. Due to artificial shortage created in the market, it took me two months to get a meter,” said a consumer, who did not want to be identified for fear of being raided by the vigilance.