Our Bureau

Mumbai, June 21

THE Maharashtra Government has finally chosen the locations of six police stations, which would be exclusively used for detection of power thefts in the State.

The Government will also be setting up three courts to try cases of power theft. A decision to this effect was taken on Tuesday at a meeting between the Home, Energy and Finance Minister in the secretariat.

Speaking to mediapersons, the Deputy Chief Minister and Home Minister, Mr R.R. Patil, said that each police station would have a staff of 24 police personnel who would work under the administrative and technical command of the Chairman and Director (Vigilance) of the MSEB. The responsibility of the force would rest with the Additional Director of Police, Pune.

Existing manpower would be used from the Home Department for setting up these police stations. The police stations would be located in Kalyan, Nagpur, Jalna, Latur, Pune and Nashik at a cost of Rs 86 lakh to the Maharashtra State Electricity Board (MSEB).

The stations are being set up under section 135 - 139 of the Electricity Act 2003 and will have jurisdictions in more than one district. Power thefts account for 12 per cent of the transmission and distribution (T&D) losses in Maharashtra, which are estimated at 35 per cent of the power generated.

Saving even one per cent of these losses could result in a gain of Rs 160 crore for the MSEB.

The highest T&D losses are from the Parbhani circle (56 per cent) and the lowest in Kolhapur (19 per cent).

The State is experiencing a severe power crisis, being short of 3,000 MW. It has resulted in load shedding for more than nine hours daily in most of rural areas.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated June 22, 2005)
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