HYDERABAD: As per the latest data released by the Central Power Distribution Company of Andhra Pradesh Limited (CPDCAPL), close to 16% of the total electricity distributed within GHMC limits is unaccounted for, with half of it being lost in the form of power theft and unlawful pilferage. Of the daily demand of 40 Million Units (MU), close to 8% or 3.2 MUs is lost to those who avoid paying bills or indulge in power theft.
“Within our administrative limits, which includes seven districts of Andhra Pradesh, around 110 MU is distributed daily, of which 40 MU is provided to areas within GHMC limits. Apart from distribution losses which will be there in any transmission network, around 8% is lost to power theft and pilferage alone,” admitted G Raghuma Reddy, Director (Projects & IT), CPDCAPL.
According to him, from this amount of 40 MU, 6 MU is distributed to the Old City, where the billing reported is 60% of the distributed power. “Close to 40% of the power distributed in the Old City region is unaccounted for, the highest figures in the city. Due to prevailing socio- economic conditions, we can neither cut off the supply nor ask them to settle the bills,” he added. In the more urban parts of the city, the non-billing figure is 10%, while in the peripheral regions, it is usually 20%.
Upcoming preventive measures
The power distribution company on its part has been depending on its time tested methods and informers, to close in on the offenders. In the just concluded fiscal year, CPDCAPL penalised 20,630 consumers for charges varying from pilferage and unauthorised usage to meter tampering with fines to the tune of `18.4 crore collected, mentioned Raghuma Reddy.
The company though realising now that fine collection doesn’t necessarily include the entire net of defaulters has come up with a solution to the problem, which is being implemented in many states across the country- that of installing distribution transformer meters. CPDCAPL is currently in the process of installing the same on the 41,000-odd distribution transformers under its control in the entire region, Hyderabad included.
G Anantha Ramu, Chairman & Managing Director, APCPDCL explained that the meters would help read the difference in energy demand of an area and the actual power distributed. The difference if major, will point to misuse of electricity supplied and help locate the region corresponding to a feeder line where the anomaly has been detected.
“The system is expected to be operational by September this year. Already 27,000 distributon transformers have been installed with such meters,” said Raghuma Reddy. The company is also replacing all electro-mechanical/ analog meters with digital meters in a phased manner to ensure billing and other Unaccounted For Errors come down even further.