Government Amends Electricity (Rights of Consumers) Rules


10:16 AM

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What’s in Today’s Article?

  • Background (Context of the Article)
  • Key Amendments to the Electricity Rules, 2020


  • The Government of India has approved amendments to the Electricity (Rights of Consumers) Rules, 2020.
  • Issuing the amendments, the Union Minister for Power and New & Renewable Energy Shri R. K. Singh stated that these amendments further reduce the timeline for getting new electricity connections.
  • These rules cover aspects such as billing, complaints, compensation and timelines for new connections.
  • They also offer support for renewable energy generation by prosumers.
  • The Power and New & Renewable Energy Minister stated that the present amendments will further empower the consumers.

Major Amendments to the Electricity (Rights of Consumers) Rules, 2020

  • Facilitating Easier and Faster installation of Rooftop Solar Systems:
    • Exemption has been given for the requirement of technical feasibility study, for systems up to a capacity of 10 kW.
    • For systems of capacity higher than 10 kW, the timeline for completing the feasibility study has been reduced from twenty days to fifteen days.
    • Further, in case the study is not completed within the stipulated time, the approval will be deemed to have been given.
    • Further, the timeline for the distribution licensee to commission Rooftop Solar PV systems has been reduced from thirty days to fifteen days.
  • Separate Connections for Electric Vehicle Charging Stations:
    • Consumers can now obtain separate electricity connections for charging their Electric Vehicles (EVs).
    • This aligns with the country's goal of reducing carbon emissions and reaching Net Zero by the year 2070.
  • New connections and change in existing connections to be obtained faster:
    • The time period for obtaining a new electricity connection under the Rules has been reduced from seven days to three days in metropolitan areas.
    • It has been reduced from fifteen days to seven days in other municipal areas, and from thirty days to fifteen days in rural areas.
    • However, in rural areas with hilly terrain, the time period for new connections or for modifications in existing connections will remain thirty days.
  • Additional Rights for Consumers in Residential Colonies and Flats:
    • Owners residing in co-operative group housing societies, residential colonies, etc., will now have the option to choose from the distribution licensee either individual connections for everyone or a single-point connection for the whole premises.
    • The exercise of the option will be based on a transparent ballot to be conducted by the Distribution Company.
    • Parity has also been brought in the tariff charged to consumers who get electricity supplied through single-point connection and to those who avail of individual connections.
  • Mandatory Additional Meter in cases of Complaints:
    • In case of a complaint, the distribution licensee is now required to install an additional meter within five days from the date of receipt of the complaint.
    • This additional meter will be used to verify the consumption for a minimum period of three months, thus reassuring consumers and ensuring accuracy in billing.

Q1) What is a Smart Meter?

A smart meter provides detailed information on consumption in order to reduce electricity bills and also increase knowledge about the status of the electricity grid, which improves its performance and the quality of service for customers.

Q2) What is a solar panel made out of?

By weight, the typical crystalline silicon solar panel is made of about 76% glass, 10% plastic polymer, 8% aluminum, 5% silicon, 1% copper, and less than 0.1% silver and other metals, according to the Institute for Sustainable Futures.

Source: Government amends Electricity (Rights of Consumers) Rules