In a bid to strengthen its revenue management system, the Delhi Jal Board (DJB) has revised its billing system and instituted a new water consumption rule. Under the new rule, a consumer’s bill cannot exceed more than 1.5 times of the amount charged in the previous month.
A resident of the city can file a complaint if any amount is charged beyond this limit, Delhi Jal Board chairman Satyendar Jain said in an official statement. “If it exceeds this, an explanation will be provided to the customer, and he or she may file a complaint. The board will be accountable and responsible for any errors,” Jain said on Thursday.
According to Jain, the automatic system in the meter reader's tablet will stop billing the consumer if the consumption varies 50 percent more or less than the previous month's bill. After the consumption is confirmed from the meter reading image, these bills will be generated by the zonal revenue office.
“This step will curb the erroneous reading bills that were being generated,” Jain said.
Revenue officers in the national capital will also conduct random metre reading image audits to keep a check on the water billing system. In case the image of the metre reading is not taken properly, the inspectors will personally visit the site and recheck the reading. The inspectors can also take strict action against metre readers if they are found guilty of feeding incorrect images.
According to Mint, the Delhi Jal Board has 900 metre readers who check bill readings of about 26.50 lakh consumers in 41 zones of the national capital. Of the total consumers, nearly 18 lakh access the free water scheme by the state government.
To put a check on inconsistencies and corruption, the board will also change the meter readers every billing cycle under the new system.