PDD to procure 10 lakh electricity meters to ensure judicious use of power

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Srinagar: The Power Development Department is going to procure 10 lakh electricity meters to ensure 100 percent metering in Jammu and Kashmir in the coming years.

An official of the PDD said that the government of India will provide funds for procuring of 10 lakh meters for the state. “Process has already begun in this regard,” the official said.

The official said that the new meters will be of better quality and will replace the old ones.

The official said there were complaints that the old meters developed defects within months after installation and at several places had defunct.

Chief Engineer, PDD, Shehnaz Goni, said that 10 lakh meters will be for the entire state.

“These metres will also be installed in Kashmir so that people use electricity judiciously,” she said.

The Chief Engineer said there were some villages which are yet to be electrified. “We are making efforts to ensure that these villages in Gurez, Machil and Keran get electrified very soon. Presently we provide them electricity through diesel generators from three to six hours in a day,” she told KNS.

Ghulam Mohammad, a resident of Pampore, said the meter that the PDD had installed in 2012 has not been working for the last few years. “We asked the PDD officials many times to replace the poor quality meter but nothing happened so far,” he said.

The PDD has been facing hurdles in installing metres in several areas due to public resentment resulting the department had missed several deadlines of 100 percent metering.

The PDD officials said the department had envisaged to meter to all its consumers by the end of the 2019.

The official said that PDD has projected installation of 1147723 metres from 2015 to 2019 in domestic and non-domestic categories of which 202374 have been installed during 2015-2016 and had projected 252537 meters in 2016-2017 but could not achieve the target due to turmoil in the valley.

“The metering process has been slow due to situation in the state and due to resource constraints,” the official added.

A report submitted by the Abraham Committee headed by P Abraham in 2011 had slammed the Power Development Department of JK that it had not made “any serious effort to reduce the loss levels”.

The committee had found that T&D losses were due to lack of up gradation of old lines and equipments, poor repair and maintenance of equipments, non-installation of sufficient capacitors, theft and pilferage, tampering of meters, and low accountability of employees.

As per the official figures, the Jammu and Kashmir has over 50 percent transmission and distribution losses, while the national average is around 30 percent.

(With inputs from KNS)

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