Suffering and harassment over water, electricity, gas and telephone bills was once a monthly occurrence in the life of the citizens of Bangladesh. Almost every month there were complaints about enhanced bills of various amenities.
The subject became so 'normal' that it took place in dramas, poems, songs and stories. After the gas bill became monthly and burner based, the hubbub of consumers and authorities has decreased.
Now, there is an electronic meter in every house, but there is a lot of talk about 'reading' the electricity meter. But the discussion surrounding the ghostly bills seems to have broken all previous records.
A report published in this daily showed that Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (BERC) is checking if a distribution company has changed the tariff or price.
From their findings it was determined that the distribution companies had faults. Furthermore, the companies will prepare actual bills through accurate meter readings.
The actual bill has probably
been adjusted according to
the previous ones which are due
On the other hand, in the case of water bill, it is more than 8-10 times. There are obviously serious inconsistencies in this. Now, the actual bill has probably been adjusted according to the previous ones which are due. This is a reason as to why electricity or water bills are coming uncannily higher.
Meanwhile, the authorities say that if anyone brings a complaint, it will be investigated and if extra bills are collected, adjustments will be made later.
Now the question arises – how many complaints can they properly investigate and how much time and resources can be wasted in fixing the mistakes or lack of responsibility?
We want to see the immediate cancellation of all ghost bills. Those which have already been collected have been refunded or are being readjusted with the next bill.
Also, in this day and age of computers and digitalisation, we hope that the old manual reading of meters using valuable human resources should be abandoned for a more central and automated method. This system must be introduced in all cases even if it takes some time.