Srinagar: In a bizarre incident Jammu and Kashmir Power Development Department (JKPDD) has sent an electricity bill worth Rs 79,000 to a household in Shadipora Payeen in Sumbal, having no electricity connection!
In 2013, the house-owner Mohammad Ishaq Wani got his first electricity bill. The same day Wani visited the concerned office in Sumbal town to plead his point that he has no electricity connection. “At that time the officials promised an on-spot inspection of my house to ascertain the truth,” said Wani. But even after five years have passed, nobody from the department has come to his house.
“I am using kerosene lamps for lighting purposes. I don’t have an electricity connection yet,” said Wani.
For next five year, Wani knocked at every possible door to convince authorities that he has no electricity connection but failed. Instead, in 2018, Wani received a cumulative electricity bill worth Rs 79,000 for “using electricity since 2013”.
Wani, a labourer, is now left in a fix as to how to convince the PDD to see the obvious!
Interestingly, almost every neighbour of Wani’s is ready vouch for his innocence, provided if approached by the PDD.
“In my entire lifetime, I have never seen electricity in his house. He manages by lighting a kerosene lamp,” said Bashir Ahmad Wani, 34, who lives a few houses away from Wani’s. “We want strict action to be taken against the department and concerned officers. How can they harass a poor soul like this?”
In 2014, Wani visited Deputy Commissioner Bandipora’s office with a written complaint against PDD’s callous attitude. After listening to Wani’s story DC assured him that his case will be investigated. “But still I got this bill recently,” said Wani. “Every visit to PDD means a big blow to my savings as I live hand-to-mouth.”
In September 2017, once again Wani was at the DC’s office with another application seeking an investigation into the matter.
When contacted DC Bandipora, Sajad Ahmad Ganaie said, “He should come to my office and I will look into this matter personally. I cannot make any statement until this matter is brought in my notice.”
In all these years Wani’s has accumulated a bundle of applications and electricity bills, which he often looks at under the dim light of a kerosene lamp.