The Punjab State Electricity Regulatory Commission (PSERC) has sought a report from Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL) on the billing scam following an HT report.
Besides, PSPCL Patiala zone chief engineer KS Khiara has shot off a letter to the PSPCL management for immediate transfer superintending engineer Bhupinder Sharma, executive engineer Sunil Jindal, sub-divisional officers (SDOs) Deepak Goyal and Jatinder Singh Kanda for impartial probe as the scam took place under their jurisdiction.
Khaira has also sought a reply from the superintending engineer for the delay in ordering a probing against accounts officer Vinod Mataru, who was involved in the scam since 2014.
The chief engineer said the scam could have been unearthed much before had the Patiala superintending engineer probed the role of Mataru and clerk Bhinder Singh, against whom the executive engineer had demanded an inquiry in October 2011.
Mataru and Bhinder had allegedly changed the metre readings on the PSPCL server to benefit some consumers.
When contacted, Khaira refused to comment saying: “It’s internal communication of the PSPCL. I have recommended some measures for an impartial probe.”
Meanwhile, the PSERC has asked the PSPCL to clarify why no action was taken against defaulting consumers for more than 18 months even as the supervising officials had to monitor outstanding payments.
Chairman-cum-managing director, PSPCL, KD Chaudhri, could not be contacted as he was away for a meeting in Chandigarh.
Chaudhri has already marked inquiry to the technical audit team, apart from suspending seven officials. THE CASE
Some consumers were asked not to deposit bimonthly bills based on actual reading taken on the spot by billing machines. Even after a year, their connections were not disconnected. Later, employees reversed the meter reading on the server to reduce these power bills for lakhs of rupees to just a few thousand bucks.