Smart Electricity Meters in Jammu, Srinagar From Next Month

Installation of smart electricity meters to bring transparency in billing and reduce power losses will begin in Jammu and Srinagar from next month.

Installation of smart electricity meters to bring transparency in billing and reduce power losses will begin in Jammu and Srinagar from next month, officials have confirmed. In the first phase starting November 15, about 20,000 meters would be installed in the twin cities and the process would continue in a phased manner till the entire two lakh meters, sanctioned under Prime Minister Development Programme (PMDP), is installed.

This was revealed at a meeting, chaired by principal secretary PDD, Rohit Kansal, to review the centrally-sponsored schemes and installation of smart meters. During the meeting, the principal secretary asked REC Power Distribution Co (RECPDCL), which is the project implementing agency (PIA), to ensure that there would be no further delays and the metering process in other urban and rural areas under various centrally-sponsored schemes is implemented expeditiously, officials said.

Briefing officials at the meeting, the officers of RECPDCL informed that with the installation of smart meters, the consumers will be able to know their electricity consumption pattern and bill on real-time basis, by which they will be in a position to manage load and reduce their monthly bill. The consumers will also know the status of power supply and load in use when away from home, the officials said.

Kansal said the smart meters will bring about transparency in metering, billing and collection which will eventually reduce power losses and ensure quality and reliable power supply to consumers.

The officials said the consumers can recharge the smart meters in the same manner as mobile phones are recharged, thus eliminating the requirement of manual meter-reading and paper bill distribution.

The meters will be read remotely in data centre at Srinagar and data recovery centre at Jammu through communication channels, which will also facilitate the distribution corporations to know the status of power supply at the consumer end and take prompt action in case there is power interruption due to system faults or some other reason.

In September, it was reported that the Ministry of Power has begun the process to set up a Rs 2,000 crore joint venture (JV) for providing a common backend infrastructure facility (CBIF) to power distribution companies (Discoms) for faster roll-out of smart electricity meters in the country. As announced at the time, the JV will have four promoters, NTPC Ltd, REC Ltd, Power Grid Corporation of India Ltd (PGCIL) and Power Finance Corporation (PFC). All the firms are under the administrative control of the Ministry.

The CBIF will enable the fast-track implementation of smart meters across the country. It will simplify smart meter rollout for discoms by offering a plug and play architecture with standardised, pre-configured, pre-integrated, scalable back-end infra for the rollout of smart meters. There would be an ease of scalability, avoiding asset duplication and flexibility to discoms in installing smart meters in a phase-wise manner, wherein the Meter Data Management (MDM) services can be expanded on the basis of requirement.

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