With Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL) acting tough to curb the menace of power theft, consumers, too, are brainstorming and coming up with innovative means to steal electricity.
The PSPCL caught a man allegedly stealing power through a remote control censor on Tuesday. The accused, Sarabjit Singh, was stealing power at Islam Ganj area in CMC division, when he was caught red-handed.
Sarabjit, son of local resident Amar Singh, runs a mobile shop in the area. At his shop, the meter seals were found to be fake. The impression on the seals also did not match the originals. The ultrasonic welding of the meter was also found to be tempered. A 5KV air-conditioner (AC) was installed at the shop, found the PSPCL team.
Sarabjit was fined Rs 1.5 lakh for the theft and a case, under section 135 of the Electricity Act, 2003, has been filed against him. Power connection at his shop has also been disconnected.
Rashpal Singh, chief engineer, central zone of PSPCL, said, “A circuit was installed in the meter which was being controlled through a remote. Through remote, the meter can be run slowly or to be fully stopped.”
Not only at the shop, it was found that Sarabjit used to steal electricity from his residence also. At residence, there was a direct kundi connection. Besides, the meter of his residence was found overloaded as the approve load for it was 3KV, but Sarabjit was running two ACs on this load.
He was fined 1.37 lakh for bypassing the meter and stealing electricity on household connection. Another case has been registered under section 135 of the Electricity Act, 2003.
Authorities from anti-power theft station, Sarabha Nagar, were also informed about the case to take further action.
Rashpal said, “This is a unique case of power theft. We have not come across such cases in the recent past.”
The department had introduced agents or informers to inform the authority concerned about cases of power thefts, Rachpal added.
PSPCL fined total 502 consumers for stealing power in May and June.
The chief engineer urged the people not to steal electricity for their own benefit as bypassing meter could damage the electrical wires and other equipments at their houses.