Maha Vitaran looted consumers and the govt too!
Mumbai : The Maha Vitaran- power distribution company of the State government- has allegedly looted the consumers and the state government of at least Rs 30,000 crore in the name of farmers. If the fact and figures, given by power experts, are to be believed, Maha Vitran is involved in Rs 60,000 crore scam.
Exposing this scam, the State Power Consumer Organisation has demanded that the government should immediately sack Ajay Mehata, MD of the company.
The State government and NCP, already cornered by allegations of power scam, may face the heat during the Monsoon Session which is just four days ahead. Pratap Hogade, a well known power expert, authorised as representative of consumers by the Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Commission (MERC) and convenor of the State Power and Industrial Consumer Association, has exposed the scam, which is going on for the last 13 years in the name of welfare of farmers.
“Though there was much less power consumption by them, Maha Vitaran projected this consumption more by double, triple , up to five times and issued bills to farmers accordingly. It claimed lowering power leakage by showing higher consumption of power and also grabbed subsidy from the State government in the name of farmers. The company also used this false power consumption figure to cover real power theft and recovered the loss incurred from common consumers by fare hike ,’’ Hogade claimed.
He also gave crucial documents accessed through RTI which shows billing of power was much higher than power supplied by Maha Vitaran. Even Maha Vitarn has admitted this before MERC on June one. He released two documents related to Akola sub-division and Ichalkaranji sub-division.
“There are 36 lakh agriculture (AG) pumps in the State. As per claims by Maha Vitaran, these AG pumps consumed 20,943 million unit (MU) in 2011-12 and 19740 MU in 2012-13. The company, based on these false figures, showed power leakage of 16.03 per cent and 15.53 per cent respectively. If we assume that farmers were charged at least double the actual power consumption, the hidden leakage is minimum 10 per cent. As per MERC, hidden leakage is a power theft and corruption. Taking into consideration of revenue earned by the company in last 13 years, the 10 per cent amounts to Rs 30,000 crore. Adding 12 per cent interest, the amount becomes Rs 23,500 crore. The company also got money as subsidy from the State government in the name of losses due to AG pumps which is at least Rs 7,000 crore. This means that Maha Vitaran has looted farmers, consumers and the state government by Rs 60,000 crore,’’ Hogade claimed.
“In Akola Sub-Division, Dahihanda Agriculture feeder supplied 126220 Units, but Maha Vitran showed that it sold 3,57,010 Units through this feeder and showed losses higher by around five times the original. Adopting the same method, they showed 17 times more losses in Shivpur, 14 times at Khirkhund feeders. This means the company has charged for the power units 17 times more than supplied by them. The same thing has happened in urban areas with domestic consumers at Ichalkaranji. These are only samples,’’ Hogade said mounting a scathing attack on MahaVitaran.
“A K Karale, Assistant Engineer, posted at Telhara Sub Division of Akola district was served a show-cause notice for showing real figures of power consumption of agriculture pump. He showed power consumption as 28 Units per meter in a the quarter ended in September 2011 instead of 104 Units per meter as directed by his superiors. This letter accessed through RTI proves the loot by Maha Vitaran,’’ he added.
In a letter sent by the Director (Operations) in February 2013, the company has admitted that out of total 7260 feeders in the State, negative leakage was shown at more than 2501 feeders. The negative leakage means extra billing than the actual power supplied,’’ he stressed.
He also demanded independent and third party audit of all AG pumps. He has also petitioned MERC against this scam two months before.
FPJ Political Bureau
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