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Smart meters to end electricity disputes [Noida] [Times of India]
[January 27, 2014]

Smart meters to end electricity disputes [Noida] [Times of India]

(Times of India Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) NOIDA: The Noida power discom plans to do away with the system of appointing billing agencies to end inconvenience caused to residents by electricity meter readers and bill collectors.

The discom, Paschimanchal Vidyut Vitaran Nigam Limited (PVVNL), is trying out the effectiveness of smart and radio frequency meters through a pilot project. With this technology, it will be able to note meter readings from remote locations and visitations won't be required.

Officials said the proposal to introduce this technology was made after the discom was consistently blamed for errant behaviour by billing agents who have been accused of visiting households at odd hours without possessing proper identity proofs.

According to the discom, billing agencies shortlisted through short-term tenders do not employ competent staff for the job. "We plan to make optimum use of technology to provide better services," said AK Chaudhary, executive engineer, PVVNL.

Discom officials said that employment of unskilled workers by billing agencies also often results in incorrect meter readings, thereby affecting revenue.

While the pilot project for RF meters has been undertaken in Khoda, the discom has already introduced smart meters in Sector 56 of Noida. These MRI-based readings are for those consuming above 25kW per month or in the 10-25kW categories.

Consumers, however, are demanding that the accuracy of the new meters be properly tested before a replacement. "They should take a one-time decision instead of spending crores on installing new meters," said Commodore (Retd) Lokesh Batra, a resident.

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