Coimbatore: The Tamil Nadu Electricity Regulatory Commission (TNERC) has directed the Tamil Nadu Electricity Board (TNEB) to pay compensation to consumers who waited beyond 30 days for new connections.
The TNEB was facing acute shortage of single-phase meters in the State for the last few months and even for domestic consumers the connections were released only after two to three months.
When the consumers were willing to provide meters for their new connections to avoid the delay, the TNEB refused to provide connections stating that the meters provided by the consumers should have ten years guarantee which was not offered by any dealer.
The secretary of the Coimbatore Consumer Cause (CCC), K. Kathirmathiyon, represented the same to the Tamil Nadu Electricity Regulatory Commission.
As per the Regulation 21 of the Distribution Standards of Performance (DSOP) notified by the TNERC, in the event of non fulfilment of stipulated standards for effecting new service connections (i.e., within 30 days), a compensation of Rs. 100 a day with a maximum of Rs 1,000 should be given to the affected consumers. The regulation clearly specified that the compensation should be paid to the affected consumers automatically but the TNEB had not implemented the rule.
Following a representation to the TNERC, it has now directed the TNEB Chairman to pay compensation to all eligible consumers automatically through credit entry in the consumption bill as stipulated in Regulation 22 of the DSOP. Even by conservative estimates several thousand consumers have to be paid compensation to a tune of few crores. Even though the waiting period has now been reduced drastically by sourcing meters from various places, still there are consumers waiting for more than 30 days to get a connection.
Consumers who waited for more than 30-days and are eligible for compensation could approach respective section offices for getting a credit entry into their consumption account. If any of the eligible consumer was not given compensation by the TNEB, he/she could prefer complaints with higher officials of the Board or could represent the same to the Electricity Consumers Redressal Forum of the circle.