MESCOM Wants Power Price Hike, But Wasting Power by Keeping Street Lights ON during Daylight

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MESCOM Wants Power Price Hike, But Wasting Power by Keeping Street Lights ON during Daylight

 Mangaluru : While MESCOM (Mangalore Electricity Supply Company Limited) has sent a proposal to KERC (Karnataka Electricity Regulatory Commission) to increase the rate of electricity by Rs 1.67 per unit for the fiscal 2021-22, but on the other hand it has turned a blind eye of electricity being wasted by keeping the streets light ON even when it is BRIGHT outside- some street lights are turned on well before 6 pm, when it is still bright, and they are not shut off even after 8 am in some places.

It is learnt that the proposal was sent by Mescom as its present income is not sufficient to fulfill essentials of the department. In the proposal recovery of specified charges, demand charges and 30% specified charges is considered. In the proposal, Mescom has also requested to consider revision of cross subsidy, surcharge and additional surcharge according to the annual income of 2021-22. Mescom covers Dakshina Kannada, Udupi, Chikkamagaluru and Shivamogga districts. Last year, Mescom had asked KERC to raise the unit rate by 62 paise per unit and KERC had approved to increase 40 paise.

Public if not happy with this price hike that will be implemented soon, there is some more time to submit their objections to this proposal. Objections need to be sent in prescribed form to Receipts officer, KERC, 16C-1, Miller Tank Bed Area, Vasanatha Nagar, Bengaluru in six sets. One copy of the same should be sent to the superintendent engineer (commercial), corporate office, Mescom Bhavan, Bejai, Mangaluru. Okay now coming to the wastage of power due to carelessness of the Mescom workers, whose job is to turn on the lights when it’s dark, and turn them off in the morning when it’s bright. But unfortunately in many parts of the City, the Mescom staff are not following their duties.

Who has never cursed Mescom officials or staff when they see street lights still lit during the day? Especially as we have all been taught from a very young age to switch off the lights as soon as there is enough natural daylight to avoid wasting money and energy. However, many times things happen in a different way. When a common person is late by a short period in paying the power bill, the MESCOM officials are quick in disconnecting the power supply. But on the other hand when electricity is simply wasted with the street lights remaining lit during daylight, I guess that is okay with MESCOM authorities. Bah humbug! When energy crisis is a big threat and unscheduled power cuts are the order of the day, street lights can be seen burning during daytime in parts of the City, to name a couple of them- Kadri road from Bunts Hostel towards Mallikatta, Valencia, Souza Lane in Kadri, hampankatta junction etc.

Whether Mangaluru City Corporation or Mescom officials have the control over the functioning of street lights, either one of them have to take the responsibility in not wasting the precious source of energy. The burning of lights in the morning might be due to the fault in automatic switches that have to cut off the lights during the day, or probably the man who is in charge of turning on and turning off the lights might be still sleeping or gives a damn about the power wastage. Either he turns the lights on early in the evening since he wants to reach home early, or might be still sleeping to turn them off in the morning.

Few residents speaking to Team Mangalorean said that the street lights in their area are on for long periods of time when it is bright outside and they say that it is the duty of the officials in Corporation or Mescom to ensure that all street lights and switches were maintained properly. “Periodic checks are not happening. Huge amount of taxpayers’ money is getting wasted. Energy consumption is already high because of the use of fans and air conditioners to beat the summer heat. It is the responsibility of the authorities to take steps to prevent waste of energy unnecessarily”, said yet another lady resident of Kadri area.

So what’s the solution for this? The street lights have to be on to check if the fault has been duly repaired. Just like at home, when you change a bulb! The difference is that probably they do not have a single switch to switch the light off after the test. The street lights therefore remain on for days, until complaints are made or the issue is highlighted in This scene is ironic, as street lights are not necessary during the morning hours. Yet, we notice this happening every day.

And in that case, as responsible citizens of Mangaluru, we need to bring such power wastage issues to the attention of the Mescom authorities or MCC, as this is an extremely worrying situation. Seeing light still on in the morning, when the sun had risen, it was an immense waste of electricity. In a Smart City like Mangaluru, where people are encouraged to save water and electricity in favour of Mother Nature, such wastage is certainly unacceptable. This scene was troubling and Yours truly felt very helpless about it. With this in mind, I hope that the concerned authorities realize the need to do something about the issue. Let the motto of MESCOM, and MCC’s be “SAVE ENERGY, and NOT WASTE ENERGY”?

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  1. Mr Alfie forget about the wastage of burning lights. Go around the City and Rural areas and find out how many extra Poles are erected with Lights to please certain people. Contractors install Poles meant for the roads and streets landed surrounding their Houses and Properties. I have witnessed a Mescom Contractor install close to 16 Light Poles surrounding His Property. Contractors have rubbing hands with Mescom employees and Officials to get the job. When there are no street lights around the area, lights around the Cotractor Property burn sometimes without Meter. Who has to pay for it. Electricity Consumption Cost is paid by the Panchayat Office, even after notifiying the PDO’s no result from them. The public knows why this is happening.

    Tell the Mescom office regarding a Tilting Pole ready to fall and cause damage of High Cost, but they will not take any action. Maybe the reason is if that Pole is removed minimum expenses. But if that pole falls it will drag down 2 more Poles and expenses will be 3 times for the contractor to make money.

    Here is an example: I have informed Mescom regarding a Pole ready to fall for 2 years or more. I met Kulshekar JE’s and Engineers at the Bejai Mescom office with Photos and Pole Number. Still, they did not work but this pole almost fell on a Rickshaw 2 weeks ago in Neermarga and cost more due to damaged Cables replacement,contractor cost double etc. plus problem for traffic movement.

    All this cost has to be borne by Common Citizens with big Bill. I think ACB-CCB-Lokayukta and IT should look into this.

  2. Wastage and pilferage are nothing new. Supervisors have a job to make sure that such a wastage does not happen. Lights with photo sensors can be useful. Production cost and operation cost need to be recovered to keep the company afloat before Mukesh Ambani takes over.
    Samaj mein aayi baat?

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