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Friday, June 17, 2016

Why should DHBVN charge additional amount for making online payment/application for new connection?

Why should DHBVN charge additional amount for making online payment/application for new connection? 

Recently a news report was published in Navbharat Faridabad Times dtd. 13/06/2016 reporting that DHBVN (Dakshin Haryana Bijli Vitran Nigam) would be charging an additional amount of Rs. 50/- per application for online application for getting electricity connection. DHBVN has also been charging additional amount for making online payment of their electricity bills. 

The author is of the opinion that such charging of additional amount as surcharge for onine application for electricity connection and online payment for electricity bills is ant-consumer practices as :
1. Online application reduces cost of service provider i.e DHBVN on account of stationary, engagement of manpower for interfacing with the consumer, data entry in computerising the application received besides stress on space and resources that may be due to personal visits of the applicant in case of manual submission of form and receiving payment for electricity bills
2. The online application and payment would supplement the efficiency of the service provider.
3. manual interaction reduces with the online operations.
4. It reduces on the pressure on staff for receiving application fee, electricity bills,  accounting and depositing with banks and then tracking for its credit in the books.
5. Inculcating habits with the consumers for online transaction is a step towards digitisation and digitisation reduces the cost of operation and best utilisation of manpower which can be deployed elsewhere for efficient productivity.
6. Many operators in fact offers discounts for online transaction. The glaring example is of PSU telecom service operator BSNL. BSNL offers a discount of 1% on the bill amount if it is paid through the online payment gateways. 
It is expected that DHBVN  would withdraw charging of such additional fee for making online payment for Electricity bills and online submission of application for new electricity connection. Haryana Electricity Regulatory Commission (HERC) need to intervene in the matter.

5 comments:

  1. Please start a petition through Awaz.com or Change.org for signature campaign. I am sure most of the consumers will come forward to sign the petition. Please reflect the above points in the petition.

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    Replies
    1. The matter has already been informed to Haryana Electricity Regulatory Commission. I shall update the status after receiving response from HERC.

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  2. I completely agree that there should not be any surcharge for online transactions, rather the online payment fees charged by banks should also be absorbed by DHBVN instead of passing it on or collecting it from the subscribers / customers.

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    Replies
    1. In fact charging of fee for payment through debit card is in violation of directives of Reserve Bank of India. The card issuers. bankers need to block those merchant payment gateways. It shall be appreciable if the consumers being charged for fee for payment through debit card should complain to their bankers highlighting violation of RBI Order.

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    2. All the consumers who are being charged additional fee for making online payment through Debit Card may please complain to their banks as the same are not permitted as per directives from Reserve Bank of India. We have brought this unethical practices to the notice of Department of Consumer Affairs, Govt. of India.

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