The Rural Electrification Board (REB) has taken an initiative to install 2 crore smart pre-paid meters by 2025 to facilitate its clients in paying hassle-free monthly electricity bills, official said.
At present REB has 2 crore 70 lakh clients. They want to replace the electro-magnetic meters by smart pre-paid meter from all Palli Bidyut Samities in the country. All users will be brought under the smart pre-paid meter gradually.
REB Director Anwar Hossain said ‘Up to June, around 4 lakh pre-paid meters have been installed. More new 7.5 lakh clients will be included by the end of the current year’.
The BREB started to install smart pre-paid meter system from 2017 aiming to check misuses and wastage of power and get actual revenue against the consumption of power.
The BREB official further said that the smart pre-paid/ power billing system is similar to the mobile recharging system. The clients could use power upon its financial ability by using smart pre-payment meter.
Besides, they could see their respective ongoing power load and reading. They will get Tk 100 instantly as emergency credit if their pre-paid money is exhausted.
The main features of the pre-payment systems are-easy to add credit to the meter through smart card, warning for low credit, negative credit during friendly hours/Holidays, data exchange between meter and the utility, tamper protection, abnormal voltage protection, non-allowance of over sanctioned load, automated record keeping, no outstanding, advance collection of bills, no need for meter reader and billing, reduce down the confusion in between the house owner and the tenant.
The government started to install smart (online) pre-payment meter system from 2011.
Apart from BREB's smart pre-paid meter installation project, more 10 million smart pre-paid meter will also be installed by DPDC, PDB, DESCO, Ozopadico and Nesco as part of the government's vision to ensure supply of cent percent electricity to all the households
However, before the scheduled time, the government wants to ensure electricity for all by next year. To this end, the power distribution companies are working fast. Currently 93 percent people are under electricity coverage, an official said.
According to Power Division, in 2009, when the AL-led government assumed office, the nation was suffering from chronic power supply crisis. The government declared that every house will come under electricity coverage by 2019.
To this end, the government has taken up short, medium and long term projects for generation, distribution and transmission, which is being implementation in different phases. The government is working to provide power to remote shoals and islands. Where the grid power is not reachable, electricity is being provided through the solar mini grid. Power generation capacity has more than quadrupled with consumers increasing thrice, said a power division official.
Bearing in mind the slogan of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for ensuing electricity in all households, the government has set targets to generate 24,000 megawatts by 2021, 40,000 megawatts by 2030, and 60,000 megawatts by 2041 respectively. The construction of 53 power plants with capacity of generating 14,202 megawatts of electricity are underway.