For an unnecessary curve in the main electricity line that caused Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL) recurring losses in transmission, the officials concerned failed to give a reason during inquiry.
The farmers affected took the complaint to court, and blamed the "harassment" on their objection to the extortion of money for a political function. The PSPCL had claimed that the bend was to keep the line at a safe distance from a brick kiln that emitted ash. However, fly ash continued to settle on the transmission cable, and the power corporation now had to install anti-fog disc insulators.
In a lawsuit filed in Faridkot, farmers Rakesh Kumar and Pammi Arora have alleged the corporation officials diverted the high-voltage electricity supply line from its original path on purpose to bisect their field and lower the market value of the property.
The farmers had objected to forced collection of Rs 500 each from the people whose tube-wells were connected to the electricity network in four villages of Faridkot district. The officials, as they have alleged, wanted the money for a political function two years ago.
Not only the property's price was affected but also the corporation suffered a loss of more than Rs 4 lakh because the new path required it to lay 200 metres of more cable. The bend caused recurrent loss of electricity in transmission because of the wire's increased length.
Deputy commissioner Ravi Bhagat had asked the tehsildar to visit the site, and the official had concluded in his report that that diversion from straight path was unnecessary.