Puducherry electricity dept directed to pay compensation to consumer

An electricity ombudsman has directed the Puducherry electricity department to pay a compensation of Rs 10,000 to a consumerfor gross negligence and delay in providing power supply.

Electricity ombudsman for the Joint Electricity Regulatory Commission (JERC) for the state of Goa and the Union territories R K Kaul has also directed the department to recover the compensation amount from the official or officials concerned, who deliberately delayed providing connection. He ordered a departmental inquiry to fix the responsibility of the official or officials concerned.

“Because of the gross negligence on the part of the respondent (the electricity department), the appellants (M Mathivanan and M Karthikeyan) continued to suffer for a long time to get the electrical connection in their favour. Because of the delayed release of electrical connection, the appellants suffered a monetary loss in terms of rental loss to their property and continued suffering mental agony,” Kaul said in his order dated December 2.

On December 27 last year, Mathivanan and Karthikeyan sought the department to provide a permanent power connection and deposited the fee. The department delayed providing the power supply in spite of the repeated requests by the appellants. It provided them connection on September 16 this year, more than eight months after the they had applied for it.

Referring to the relevant rules and regulations of the JERC, Kaul said the department ought to have provided them connection within three days of making the payment of charges and compliance of other requirements by the consumers for loads up to 10KW. He said no application for new connection in an electrified area shall be refused under any circumstances if it complied with statutory requirements and was in conformity with the rules. He pulled up the department for the inordinate delay.

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