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JAN 08 2018

Power theft with petrol: New technology to jam electricity meters

  • Economic Times, ET Bureau / Hyderabad
  • Created: Mon 08th JAN 2018


Petrol injection is a new weapon in the "armoury" of power thieves. Believe it or not, the vigilance department team was horrified to learn about the illegal trick being adopted by people to slow electricity meters. The shocker came to light during recent raids conducted in the city.

Members of the team say there were cases where petrol was injected in electricity meters having LCD using syringes. It stops displaying power reading.

"It is difficult to identify cases where petrol was injected in meter because it vaporises. And a small hole made to inject syringe is not easily visible. Apart from this, we noticed another method being adopted by people for slowing meters.A small hole is made at the rear side of meter using needles and then insert something using a hook like wire, which slows reading," deputy general manager, vigilance (city circle), Madhya Kshetra Vidyut Vitaran Company Limited, Poonam Tumram told TOI.

"Using hook wires to illegally draw power from electric pole is a common in slum areas, but using petrol to slow down meter is mainly being used in the city. We conduct vigilance searches on a regular basis and conduct mass checking at regular intervals. In a recent mass checking drive on January 3 and 4, we registered 79 cases of power theft. In almost half of these cases, it seems either petrol was injected or meter was tampered by making a hole at the rear side," she said.

"We are yet to make exact valuation of the revenue loss. All meters were seized and sent for laboratory tests. Once we get the report, we will be able to analyse exact loss caused due to tampering," she said.

Apart from routine activities to check power theft, the vigilance department conducts mass checking on regular intervals. These checking drives are undertaken in the areas where there is low per unit revenue, or the gap between the power supplied and power billed is more, said sources.


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