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Devbrat Patnaik

Bhubaneswar: The Central Electricity Supply Utility (CESU) in Odisha that had been grappling with problems of power pilferage and revenue loss therewith besides complaints by the consumers over recurrent power cuts since years seems to have got the ‘mastermind’ to set things right. Crime Branch IG Arun Bothra who took charge as the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of CESU has brought about visible changes in the way the utility organisation was functioning.

In a major announcement, Bothra today said people will now be rewarded for reporting power theft. Though this had already made a buzz on social media, where Bothra is super active, the CB IG made an official declaration in this regard today.

“Power theft complainants will now get 10 per cent of the penalty amount, if electricity theft is detected. However the names of the informers will be kept secret,” said Bothra.

Elaborating about the development, he said, “We will soon launch a campaign to curb electricity theft. We also want to engage the SHGs in meter reading, bill collection and e-payment system and they will be provided with machines after a training.”

“People are active on Twitter and I have been receiving various complaints and am responding too. But I would request them to file complaint with CESU and not in my personal account. Because that’s a long-term solution considering the fact that I’ll not be associated with CESU for a lifetime. I, on behalf of CESU, assure everyone that in next 2-3 months, situation will improve and you will see the results,” said Bothra.

Recently, when one Rafikuddin lodged a complaint on Twitter regarding power theft in a betel shop in Salepur area, CESU officials swung into action and conducted a raid immediately. A case u/s 135 of Electricity Act was also registered against the concerned betel shop owner besides imposing a penalty of Rs 25,645 on him.

Bothra surprised the complainant stating, “You are entitled to a reward of 10% of penalty amount recovered. Do let me know where to send your cheque.”

This is not the only instance where Bothra was hailed for his responsive administration, more so through the medium of social networking sites.

He has also been one of the prompt officials to respond to complaints even in matters pertaining to CRUT where he handles additional charge as the Managing Director (MD).

Recently when a student requested him to change the timing of a Mo Bus to facilitate tuition classes, Bothra was quick to respond, ”It will be changed by 10 minutes. Within this week. You don’t need to walk to next bus stop. We want you to save time & use it for studies. Nothing is more important than supporting students & young people like you. It will be done.”

True to his promise, Mo Bus chart with rescheduled timing was published the very next day.

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