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Smart meter uproar continue in Vadodara, residents condemn surged bills

Updated: May 16th, 2024

Smart Meter

In an ongoing stir over the smart meters of Madhya Gujarat Vij Corporation Limited (MGVCL) in Vadodara, protests have erupted across the city against their installation.

Residents of a government housing scheme- Swami Vivekananda Heights in Gorwa area of Vadodara, confronted the team of MGVCL on May 15.

The residents expressed their anger, stating that they were not informed about the functioning of smart meters before its installation.

When smart meters were introduced, people who protested against its installation were reportedly threatened with a ₹10,000 fine.

The residents informed that the pre-paid meters consume a recharge of ₹500 that lasts only five to six days. 

One of the residents complained, “I have received a bill of ₹2,400 instead of the usual ₹800. My electricity usage was shown as 11 units in a single day, which is impossible.”

The residents of Swami Vivekananda Heights said that they will hold a rally today and submit a petition against smart meters at the collectorate. 

Residents of Manjalpur’s Kedar Dham Society on GIDC Road also protested against smart meters.  They argued that the usage of electricity increased significantly after switching to new meters, and experienced a hike in their  bills ranging from ₹150 to ₹250 daily.

What are smart meters?

The Revamped Distribution Sector Scheme (RDSS) is a nationwide smart meter programme under implementation, by the central government.

According to the ministry of power, prepaid smart metering funding is set at 15% of the total cost per meter, capped at ₹900. For special category states, it is 22.5% with a maximum of ₹1350 per meter. The MGVCL has installed 32,99,991 pre-paid smart consumer meters. 

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