DHAKA Electric Supply Authority (DESA) issued a letter indicating decision to change electric meters by electronic meters a few months back from a certain date to consumers. On the date mentioned four DESA men appeared along with dozens of meters and the job of replacement did not take much time. But the head of team told me why pay so much bill to DESA and then proposed that they would show less meter reading as the old meters were being taken away.
I was not willing to negotiate; but I had no alternative as the meters were being taken away by them leaving me with no proof of actual electricity consumption. Ultimately, I reluctantly paid them a few hundred Taka in apprehension of probable harassment by DESA.
Recently a team of DESA people came to inspect the meters and opined that the meters were tampered and that they would not report in exchange of some gratifications. I am sorry to point out that my electric meters are locked in a cage made of steel grill and there is no possibility on my part to do the same. They demanded some money and I had no other alternative again in apprehension of probable harassment!
Dhaka water and sewerage authority (WASA) supplies water to one building or apartment house using one water meter and thus consumers are unaware of their individual consumers. There may exist household consumers and commercial consumers in the same building.
The domestic consumers are to pay taka twelve for consuming one cubic meter of water while commercial consumers are to pay take forty for the same level of consumption. Thus WASA bill makers are at liberty to fix the rate of consumption of individual consumption.
My office located in a two-storied building and my bimonthly consumption is fifteen units i.e. Taka six hundred while my land lord's bimonthly consumption is fifty units i.e. Tk six hundreds at domestic rate as per landlord's calculation.
But WASA officials are reluctant to bill as above; and I have no alternative but to negotiate underhand deal for billing on 50-50 basis i.e. 35.5 units each, my bill comes to Tk 1440 bimonthly.
Should LGRD ministry seek UN, WB, IMF, EU, ADB help so that we are not to adopt unfair practices compulsorily when gas, electricity, telephone have separate lines? The standing committee of the Jatiya Sangsad should look into the problem by devising rules and regulations before we become corruption champion again. WASA is at the top of the list of corrupt organisations in TIB report. The government should do something so that we do not have to be compulsorily corrupt as indicated above.