PIL in Bombay HC seeks formulation of strategy to reduce electricity bills during lockdown
The petitioner, Ravindra Desai, who filed the plea through advocate Vishal Saxena, cited that his businesses, like many others, had come to a standstill because of the nationwide lockdown restrictions that were imposed from March 25 to contain the Covid-19 outbreak.Updated: Jul 01, 2020 18:35 IST
A public interest litigation (PIL) has been moved before the Bombay high court (HC) seeking directions to the Maharashtra government and power service providers not to recover the exorbitant amount billed to consumers for June along with the late charges levied on them because of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19)-induced lockdown restrictions and the attendant financial woes due to the pandemic.
A Mumbai-based businessman filed the PIL after he found his June power bill to be 10 times more than his usual consumption.
He moved the court after he came to know that many other consumers had received exorbitant bills amid fears that the power service providers might adopt coercive measures such as slapping of late charges to recover outstanding amounts.
The petitioner, Ravindra Desai, who filed the plea through advocate Vishal Saxena, cited that his businesses, like many others, had come to a standstill because of the nationwide lockdown restrictions that were imposed from March 25 to contain the Covid-19 outbreak.
He argued that though the commercial activities were allowed under Maharashtra government’s Mission Begin Again campaign since June 8, the movement is severely restricted beyond a radius of only two kilometres from a person’s home.
The plea cited that a majority of Mumbaikars are diligently adhering to the prevailing lockdown norms at the cost of suffering massive financial losses.
He told the court that he was shocked to see his June power bill, which was 10 times more than his usual consumption. He prayed to the court that many consumers like him, who have received such hefty bills, are not in a position to pay because of their prevailing financial constraints.
The plea prayed before the court to reduce the power bill for June for consumers and ensure that the service providers don’t charge exorbitant amounts until normalcy is restored.
It has also prayed for an interim stay on the payment of the June bill and waive-off the late payment charges.