Nitin Raut, Maharashtra State Energy Minister has asked state-owned Mahadiscom to construct a helpdesk to solve consumers' problems after state electricity regulator MERC reinforced the utilities saying the electricity bills charged by the Discoms were as per the rules.
People across major cities in the state, including Bollywood celebs, were in shock by exorbitant electricity bill and have blamed the power companies of allotting overblown bill.
Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Commission (MERC), saw that the Discoms had followed the rules of ‘practise direction’. MERC has also asked the utilities to offer the option of easy monthly installments (EMI) and ordered them to not disconnect power over non-payment of bills until problems are solved.
According to the power suppliers, the invoices sent over the last three months were lower than average because their employees could not read the metres during the lockdown in Mumbai. They said they dispensed bills based on the average consumption for January and February - the months when power ingesting is lower.
Nitin Raut ordered Mahadiscom to set up the helpdesk and also take initiatives to spread awareness among people about the billing process through various platforms including television and social media. The state discom has decided to permit EMI option for three months for making the sum of the bill for June.
Raut also asked the discom to give a discount of two per cent to consumers who have punctually paid the bills for June as well as for those who would be paying the bill amount in advance. Also, those who had left for their towns or villages amid the COVID-19 lockdown but have paid the bills for the three months on average basis would get a refund in case they have paid extra amount.
Many B’town film stars such as Huma Qureshi, Taapsee Pannu, Renuka Shahane, Bijoy Nambiar on their Twitter handle expressed worries over the unexpected rise in their electricity bills amid the coronavirus lockdown.