By Devabrata Dutta
GUWAHATI: The Bharatiya Janata Party Khumtai MLA Mrinal Saikia on Thursday criticized the Power (Electricity) Department for its incompetency to provide better service.
“We have noticed that Dalal (brokers) lands faster than the scheme itself. In my constituency, there might be 500 families deprived of electricity. Dalals would go from place to place where electricity connections are installed and ask people for money lying about providing them a connection,” said Mrinal Saikia during the ongoing session of Assam Assembly on Thursday.
Saikia has also accused officers of not trying to curb such corruption and said that most of the time the companies given contracts or sub-contracts are indulged in such ill practices when nobody is there to monitor.
Pointing to the huge amount of non-paid electricity bills, the BJP MLA said, “It’s the duty of a meter reader to read the electricity meter and make a bill. But they show reluctance to even do that. They never enter inside a house and instead they have been giving a probable reading.”
He said as the government became so proactive in collecting unpaid bills, now people are being given correct bills of thousands and lakhs of rupees.
“When people cannot pay that at once next day the department goes and cut the electricity connection,” Mrinal Saikia informed the house.
The Assam Government is on war footing when it comes to collect unpaid electricity bills. The government has even instructed to hold the salaries of the government employees in case of long due unpaid electricity bills. The employees had to submit their clear bills before receiving salaries.
“People want to pay their bills but it’s the Electricity Department which does not provide them correct bills on time. Our government might order to collect the bills but to do so the concerned officials cannot behave like dacoits,” said Saikia slamming the Power Department.
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