KE’s incompetence

Published January 18, 2022

I LIVE in Karachi’s Gulshan-i-Maymar area, and happen to be a ‘star consumer’ as per K-Electric (KE Consumer No: 0400020886070), for I never fail to pay my bill in time. A year ago, on Dec 9, 2020, the meter at my house was changed. I did not receive any bill for the next month, and then an inflated bill of more than Rs30,000 was received in February.

On enquiry, it was found that the meter had not been updated, so this was an ‘average bill’ based on the preceding six months’ consumption, and I was assured that it would be adjusted later. I paid the bill. A month passed and I started receiving somewhat ‘normal’ bills. The last bill I received was for the month of September, 2021, beyond which I received no bill at all.

On enquiry, I was again told that all bills I had received thus far were ‘average bills’ as the meter had still not been updated. On further probe, it was found that the said meter had been erroneously registered at another Integrated Business Centre (IBC) than the one in Gulshan-i-Maymar, and the KE was trying to get the error corrected. I am still waiting for the error to be corrected.

I simply fail to comprehend the level of incompetence at KE. The problem has been in its knowledge since March 2020, but it has not taken any action in this regard. Now the bill is compounding, and there is still no update. There was an increase in tariff for December bills, but as I have not received any bill since September, it will be applied on my whole bill. Besides, being a widow aged 78 years with no income stream, I am a non-filer in terms of income tax returns, which means 7.5 per cent additional tax will also be added.

All this I will suffer and put up with whenever my bill will finally arrive even though I am not at fault at all. It is KE’s job to get the meter updated. If they cannot do this simple task for a whole year, what are the consumers expected to do? We have complained on 118, visited the complaint centre and sent an email more than once, but there has been no response.

Can anyone at KE take notice? Where should we go to bring this ordeal to an end? Had this case happened in any civilised society, KE would have been taken to courts and it would have paid compensation for their incompetence and the mental trauma to the consumers.

Nasreen Talat
Karachi

Published in Dawn, January 18th, 2022

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