CHENNAI: Barely a fortnight after the Tamil Nadu state electricity board, Tangedco, said it will be accepting ‘self-assessed’ reading by Low Tension (LT) consumers for values below Rs 30,000, hundreds of domestic consumers are in a shock after receiving their bills.
These consumers, who neither assessed it themselves nor have the officials come to assess their electricity meters, have received the previous year’s bills as per Tangedco’s announcement. They complain that the bill amount is exorbitant while the usage has not been that much.
“Our house has been locked for four months but we received an electricity bill for Rs 4,500. We have been trying to call the local electricity board office but they never pick up the phone. We are afraid that if we do not pay, they might levy extra charges,” said R Vinayak, a resident of Velachery. He said that at a time when the public is struggling to cope up with the persistent inflation, these bills are further burning a hole in their pockets.
According to Tamil Nadu Electricity Board (TNEB) officials, this could be because they were handed over the previous year’s bill. “If the electricity consumption has not been noted during the lockdown period (i.e., if the 60th day from the previous month’s calculation falls during this period), the consumers will have to pay the amount as calculated in the same month of 2019 (since there was no pandemic outbreak then),” said an official.
EB to resolve plaint within two days
In case of new consumers, whose electricity consumption has not been noted, they must pay as per calculation for the previous bill. Following complaints, officials have been rectifying the bill if users send a photo of metre reading.
TANGEDCO had made the self-assessment announcement following an earlier instruction to provisionally adopt previous month’s billing (amount based on May 2019 or March 2021 reading). To rectify the problem, login to https://www.tnebnet.org/awp/sendSuccess. Select ‘general complaints. The complaint will be resolved within two days and revised bills will be sent. However, since public is unaware about it, most of them are struggling to pay the amount.