Govt Will Replace All Meters With Prepaid Smart Meters By This Date: Timeline & Deadlines Notified
In a notification released by the Union Ministry of Power on Wednesday, the Government has notified the timeline for replacing the existing meters with smart prepaid meters, for which a sum of Rs 22,500 crore has been earmarked by the Government.
It has plans to install about 25 crore smart prepaid meters across the country.
Prepaid electricity meters are seen to be a major tool to aid the efforts of discoms to cut pilferage and reduce their gap between the cost of power supply and revenue realised by ensuring timely payments from consumers, states a source.
According to the notification on Wednesday, all power consumers, except agricultural consumers, would be given access to electricity, with the smart meters, which come with a prepayment feature.
The ministry of power had directed all central ministries to direct organizations under it to switch to prepaid smart electricity meters, issuing an advisory.
“The ministry of power has issued an advisory to all central ministries of the government to direct organisations under their administrative control to ensure switch over to prepaid smart meters on priority,” stated the advisory issued by the ministry.
The ministry proposes to install 10 crore prepaid smart meters by December 2023 in the first phase under the Revamped Reforms-Based Results-Linked Scheme, completing fully in the second phase by 2025.
Wednesday’s Notification Issued by the Power Ministry
1. All consumers (other than agricultural consumers) in areas with a communication network, shall be supplied electricity with smart meters working in prepayment mode, conforming to relevant IS, within the timelines specified below:
(i) All Union Territories, electrical divisions having more than 50% consumers in urban areas with AT&C losses more than 15% in financial year 2019-20, other electrical divisions with AT&C losses more than 25% in financial year 2019-20, all Government offices at Block level and above, and all industrial and commercial consumers, shall be metered with smart meters with prepayment mode by December, 2023:
Provided that the State Regulatory Commission may, by notification, extend the said period of implementation, giving reasons to do so, only twice but not more than six months at a time, for a class or classes of consumers or for such areas as may be specified in that notification.
(ii) All other areas shall be metered with smart meters with prepayment mode by March, 2025:
Provided that in areas that do not have a communication network, installation of prepayment meters, conforming to relevant IS, may be allowed by the respective State Electricity Regulatory Commission:
(ii) All consumer connections having current-carrying capacity beyond that specified in relevant IS, may be provided with meters with smart meters having AMR facility.
2. All feeders and distribution transformers (DTS) shall be provided with meters having AMR facility or covered under AMI, as per the timelines specified below:
(i) All feeders shall be metered by December, 2022.
(i) All DTs in electrical divisions having more than 50% consumers in urban areas with AT&C losses more than 15% in financial year 2019-20, and in all other electrical divisions with AT&C losses more than 25% in financial year 2019-20, shall be metered by December 2023.
(ii) All DTs in areas other than those mentioned in (ii) above, shall be metered by March, 2025.
(iv) DTs and HVDS transformers having capacity less than 25 kVA may be excluded from the above timelines.
3. This notification shall be effective from the date of publishing in the Gazette of India.