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Telangana witnessing an increase in power theft

Despite efforts by power utilities to reduce power theft, the incidence of the same is on a rise in the State. In areas that come under the Telangana State Southern Power Distribution Company Limited (TSSPDCL), 64,245 cases were registered in 2022, 3,000 more than in 2021.

The company has collected Rs.3,994.67 lakh in fines from consumers who engaged in illegal power consumption in the districts of Mahbubnagar, Nalgonda, Sangareddy, Siddipet, Rangareddy, and Hyderabad.

Besides this, an amount of Rs.739.11 lakh was also collected as a compounding amount from erring consumers. From the 219 cases booked against persons involved in power thefts more than once, 204 were sent to prison last year.

According to TSSPDCL Chief Vigilance Officer K Muralidhar Rao, over 90% of power thefts occur in the domestic category, with the remainder occurring in the commercial category, particularly among small traders and street vendors.

He stated that TSSPDCL was cracking down on those who were illegally using electricity and causing losses to the exchequer. “Regular raids are being conducted by the company’s vigilance officials to book cases against the offenders,” he said.

According to Energy Department officials, power utilities lose about 10% of their total revenue each year due to power theft. According to an official, power theft has become a major concern for power utilities in the state, accounting for the majority of distribution losses.

“Power theft is having an adverse impact on the utility’s finances,” he said.

Theft of electricity results in loss of revenue to the utility, disrupts local supply, and increases transmission and distribution losses due to tampering with wires and cables, an official stated.

The unauthorized utilization of electricity is punishable under Section 126 of the Electricity Act 2003 while offenses and penalties are registered under Section 135 to 139 of the Electricity Act 2003 (theft of energy).





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