Consumers have started getting their increased Power Tariff Bills, some may have already paid up …… but is there hope that there will be a Roll Back? Good Question ……. the individuals and RWAs that were actively protesting and spreading awareness …. there is hope till they have the will to fight …… but can just a few fight a cause that impacts the entire city?
Is it a cause that truly merits every citizens involvement …. by the looks of it, while there is angst towards the Tariff Hike, it has not translated into a movement. Some RWAs of South Delhi had announced in a meeting in GK-II that they will ask consumers not to pay increased tariff, instead deduct 22% from their bill and pay the balance …. the opinion is divided …….. DISCOMS may refuse to accept such payments ……. then there are those who say in case of non payment who takes responsibility in case of disconnection ….. now this can get any RWA to develop cold feet.
It is the fear of disconnection and the Governments confidence in their vote banks and THE OPPOSITION’S INABILITY TO DEBATE EFFECTIVELY ON MERIT IN VIDHAN SABHA that is frustrating the efforts of the Groups still fighting the cause. As a part of the group that put up a spirited fight and presented well researched arguments in favour of actually reducing tariffs by 30%, we feel frustrated that people seek guarantees that they will not be inconvenienced.
Did Gandhi or recently Anna give a guarantee when asking people to fill up jails …. did they say do not worry we will bail you out, failing which take care of your family while the bread earner is in jail. Why aren’t people saying we shall not pay and ensure my neighbour does the same ….. DISCOMS cannot disconnect without notice and that too en-mass. Why should RWAs give guarantees ….. they too are consumers and it is not their fight alone.
I am not suggesting that we do not pay the bills …… but visible public participation is needed in large protest rallies, because that’s the language Governments respond to …….. and we need to do it fast.
RWAs will continue their fight both at DERC and Courts, but that will take time …. we got the Govt. to agree to a CAG audit …. GK-I and GK-II even burnt Meter Ravans as visible protest ….. that’s how far RWAs can go ….. it is now for the people to do their bit ….. if nothing else call up or write to your MLA, MLC, MP and RWA office and show your visible support …. back them and see the results. We stopped a hike in 2005 ….. We can do it again ….. True Facts are with us.