Coronavirus | Consumers oppose opening of EB collection centres

This forces consumers to find ways to reach the section and it is unsafe for consumers and Tangedco employees.

Electricity consumers and industries have opposed the decision of the State Government to re-open the collection centres for payment of current consumption charges even when the State is under a lockdown as a precaution against the spread of COVID-19.

K. Kathirmathiyon, secretary of Coimbatore Consumer Cause, said the Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation (Tangedco) had asked consumers (LT and CT) to pay the previous month bill amount as its staff could not visit houses, shops or industries till April 14 to take the readings.

As a precautionary measure, the Tangedco decided not to disconnect service connections physically if the payments were not paid till April 14.

Consumers were advised to make use of online payment facilities and avoid visiting the counters. But, now, the counters are opened at the section offices to collect the payments.

This forces consumers to find ways to reach the section and it is unsafe for consumers and Tangedco employees.

Further, the Corporation has not bothered to provide relief to the public during this crisis period.

It is only avoiding physical disconnection and even domestic consumers need to pay penalty and reconnection charges.

The Tangedco should not open the cash counters.

The economically weaker section, especially those in rural areas, does not know how to make digital payments.

Hence, the Tangedco should extend the last date to April 30.

It should not collect charges for delayed payment, penalty, or reconnection charges, etc till April 30.

President of Coimbatore District Small Industries Association R. Ramamurthy said Tangedco should give time for the MSMEs to pay the consumption charges and should not collect the minimum demand charges.

Opposing opening of collection centres, he said the MSMEs would not be able to remit the charges during the lockdown.

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