HYDERABAD: Water is a precious resource, indeed. But, what if authorities decide to charge you a premium at their will? A resident of Banjara Hills, who was being charged commercial rates for water supplied to his house, took the Metro Water Board to task at the district consumer forum. The erring authorities were asked to refund the full amount of Rs 80,808 to the consumer along with a 12 per cent annual interest and Rs 10,000 compensation.
The consumer, Shobha Gupta got water connection for her three-storeyed apartment way back in
The problem, however, started in 2002 when she let out the ground floor portion for rent. Though it was rented out to a family, the Water Board started charing her commercial rates from 2009.
The average bill of Rs 600 swelled sharply to Rs 2,019 after the change to commercial rates. This continued till 2014, when she decided to call it a day and take up the matter with the district consumer forum.
The Water Body claimed the billing could have been changed either due to a fault in the metre or because a portion of the house was being used for commercial activity. The forum, however, ruled it as unfair trade practice and ordered a refund.