Introduction

Electricity Consumer Cells (ECCs) have conducted ten outreach meetings in the month of January 2020. Participants from different consumer categories such as commercial, agricultural, and domestic attended the meetings.

The venue and date of the meetings are as follows:
  1. Panchayat Office Building, Kavanoor Village, Arakkonam, Vellore on January 08, 2020
  2. St. Moses Matriculation School, Menambedu, Tiruvallur on January 11, 2020
  3. Uliyampakkam Village, Arakkonam Taluk, Vellore on January 24, 2020
  4. Government High School, Maniyanoor, Pachapatti, Salem on January 25, 2020
  5. Panchayat Office, Sitlarai, Trichy on January 25, 2020
  6. Kannakurukai village, Chengam Taluk, Tiruvannamalai on January 27, 2020
  7. Government High School, Thandalam, Thiruvallur  on January 30, 2020
  8. Muppudathiamman Koil Campus, Elanthaikulam, Palayamkottai, Tirunelveli on January 30, 2020
  9. Panchayat Office, Alagapatti, Trichy on January 31, 2020; and
  10. Sivapuri Village, Annamalai Nagar, Chidambaram Taluk, Cuddalore on January 31, 2020.

 

Presentation by ECC representatives
ECC coordinators explained the importance of conducting outreach meetings which are a platform to discuss the electricity-related issues and create awareness on energy conservation, energy efficiency, and renewable energy. 

ECC advisors described the functions and role of the ECCs in their respective districts. They explained the consumer complaint redressal mechanism and the relationship with  Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation (TANGEDCO) in resolving the complaints. ECC Advisors acknowledged TANGEDCO officials for supporting redressal of complaints including high-value complaints such as increasing the capacity of transformers, setting up of additional transformers in a particular area, etc. They also mentioned that most of the complaints were resolved through telephonic conversations with the TANGEDCO officials. 

 

Image 1: Mr. Anandan, Advisor, ECC-Tiruvnannamalai, addressing the participants

 

Presentation by ECC Engineers 
A detailed explanation about energy conservation and energy efficiency practices that can be followed at the household level was given by CAG representatives. The presentation helped the participants to understand the importance of saving energy through behavioural practices. Further, they demonstrated the working of solar energy with a demonstration kit, which has a 20 Watt solar panel, a 12 Volt - 7 Ampere hour battery, a charge controller and a 2 Watt LED bulb. At the end of the presentation, participants were clarified on the placing of home appliances, the advantages of using star labelled products etc. The necessity for renewable energy in the present scenario was also imparted with an overview of the increasing electricity crisis and global environmental issues.

 

Ms. P. Dhivya, ECC Engineer explaining about energy efficiency and energy conservation
Representative from TANGEDCO:
Mr.Sundaram, a TANGEDCO official from Arakkonam, clarified the questions asked by the participants on the frequent power fluctuations, uninformed shutdown and delay in taking meter readings. He also informed the participants to approach the Assistant Engineer at the section office for redressing the complaints in an easy manner.

 

   

 Image 2: Mr. Sundaram, TANGEDCO official, Arakkonam addressing the participants

 

Presentation by Solar Developers 
Solar developers from Tiruvallur, Tiruvannamalai, Cuddalore and Salem participated in the outreach meetings. They explained the importance of solar energy and its advantages. Further, they explained the procedure for installing rooftop solar systems. Also, they differentiated the net-metering and net feed-in mechanisms with an example. At the end of the session, the developers clarified the questions raised by the participants on the lifetime of the plant, pay-back period, etc..
Major issues raised and complaints registered through the Outreach meetings 
  1. Mr. A from Tiruvannamalai registered a complaint about the replacement of the damaged Reinforced Cement Concrete (RCC) pole of a transformer, which was in a dangerous condition. Mr. Anandhan, Advisor, ECC Tiruvannamalai, advised Mr.A to submit a written complaint to the concerned Assistant Engineer for replacing the damaged pole. 
  2. Mr. B from Vellore complained about the non-availability of the street light pole in a main street. Mr. Balaraman, Advisor, ECC Vellore helped Mr.B in drafting a complaint letter to be submitted to the local body and Assistant Engineer for necessary action. 
  3. Mr.C, from Sivapuri village, complained about the delay in taking meter reading by the assessor. Mr. Radha Krishnan, Advisor, ECC Cuddalore advised submitting a written complaint about the issue to the Assistant Engineer.
  4. Mr.D from Pachapatti village asked about the procedure for changing of temporary service connection to commercial service connection. As per the request Mr.Jayaram, Advisor, ECC Salem explained the process and advised Mr.E to submit a letter to Assistant Engineer explaining the purpose of tariff change along with valid documents.
  5. Mr. E from Maniyanoor village complained about the non-availability of street lights in the Burial ground at Maniyanoor village. Mr.Jayaram, Advisor, ECC Salem, informed the consumer to submit a letter to the local EB office.