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Defaulters set to lose power

Patna, March 8: Patna Electric Supply Undertaking (Pesu) has ordered officials to snap power connection of consumers who have failed to pay their bills before due date.

Pesu, which comes under the jurisdiction of South Bihar Power Distribution Company Ltd, gives 15 days’ time to its consumers to pay the bills. The power company charges a small amount as penalty in case the bill is paid after the due date is over.

Pesu general manager and chief engineer SSP Srivastava said: “We have asked our officials to disconnect the power connections of the consumers who owe energy dues. We, however, have not quantified the amount of dues.”

Commenting on the company’s decision, Srivastava said: “It is not a harsh decision. The move would help the consumers, as they would not have to deposit delayed payment surcharge, an interest levied on principal dues amount.”

A Pesu source said the noose would be tightened around those who owe an outstanding amount of at least Rs 1,000 and above. The directive has been seen as a move to reach the revenue collection target of Rs 140 crore in March that has been set for Pesu by the distribution company.

The distribution company has asked the officials not to spare the consumers who owe dues of even a month. However, organisations and institutions providing public service would be given some leeway.

The consumers are not happy with the decision. “The decision can’t be termed as rational. They are taking steps against small consumers but ignoring big defaulters,” said Ajay Kumar, a resident of Gardanibagh.

Pesu disconnected power connection of 1,000 consumers, owing Rs 68 lakh, on Thursday and Friday.