Total Amount of Rs. 6 crores sanctioned to Shri Nilamadhab Panda, Film Director, Eleeanora Images Pvt. Ltd. for Public Awareness Campaign on Electricity in Odisha
All of you are aware about disturbing situation in respect of supply of electricity to consumers and huge revenue loss suffered by electricity companies in Odisha due to theft, non-payment of energy bills etc. This situation has provided an opportunity to Odisha Electricity Regulatory Commission (OERC) to increase the electricity tariff on consumers and farmers in the state. Several Consumer Forums and Political parties have opposed the decision of OERC terming it as arbitrary and demanded its withdrawal. They have accused the Govt. and the Electricity distribution companies being responsible for revenue loss due to mismanagement, corruption and mal-administration in supply and distribution of electricity. RTI Expose has substantiated this allegation made by the opposition political parties and Odisha Bidyut Upobhakta Mahasangh
On 24.2.15, RTI Application was submitted to the Dept. of Energy, Govt. of Odisha seeking information about details of expenditure made for awareness programme on electricity in Odisha. The PIO, office of CESU (Central Electricity Supply Utility of Odisha) has provided the information on 26.3.15 which is as follows.
A. A Committee on Odisha Power Sector Media Campaign constituted by CESU, Govt.-owned Company in its meeting held on 2.7.2013 took the decision to give Rs. 5.85 crores to Eleeanora Images Pvt. Ltd, a Company of Nilamadhab Panda having its official address 143A, 1st Floor, SHAHPURJAT, Near Rainbows Bakery , New Delhi- 110049 for public Awareness Campaign on Electricity . This programme has been started from 1st August 2013. Sri Nilamabhab Panda has already taken Rs. 3,88,50,000.00 ( 3.88 crores rupees) by Jan 2015.
B. The justification given by Govt. to grant such huge amount to Eleeanora Images Pvt. Ltd is that there is high loss of electricity in the state due to the Consumers resorting to drawing power more than their contract demand, including in power theft and non-payment of energy bills. This proposed campaign is intended to achieve a big shift in the consumer behaviour towards these issues. This campaign will also create public opinion against power theft and non-payment making them more proactive towards the utility.
C. Total amount of Rs. 5.85 crores will be utilised for the following awareness programme.
- TV- 260 SPOTS each in 5 top popular vernacular channels of Odisha ( totalling to 1300 TV spots in all)
- Radio-1280 spots each in 2 top FM stations and All India Radio network in Odisha ( totalling to 2560 Radio Spots in 2 FM Stations in all and 8960 Radio Spots in AIR in all ).
- Print-15 insertions each in 3 leading Odia dailies and 2 national English dailies ( totalling to 75 insertions across 5 publications in all )
- Outdoor-55 hoarding and 5000 wall paintings all over the state
- PR & Media coverage –sustained through the campaign
- Events- 1000 road shows and 5000 school shows all over the state.
D. The PIO has not provided me the document, CD or copy of campaign output materials developed by Eleeanora Images Pvt. Ltd for public awareness on the ground that it is not available with the CESU. So the State Govt. is not aware about what type of material developed by this company for public awareness on electricity. The State Govt. has been simply releasing money without getting any document from the company as proof of activity or monitoring the programme whether the programme has been properly done as per agreement.
A. When the state was suffering huge revenue loss due to various reasons, why the State granted such huge amount to a Company for awareness campaign on electricity just before the general election. Is there any ulterior motive of the Minister or officers of the Dept. of Energy to sanction such amount?
B. The awareness campaign was designed to sensitise the people about the issues relating theft in electricity, non-payment of the bill by the people and to address the same. In fact this is not the issue for which the management of electricity is suffering in the state. Mismanagement in distribution of electricity, huge corruption, huge pending of electricity bill on the companies, huge salary paid outside officers engaged by electricity companies huge waiver of electricity bill to companies to EAS and other companies etc.
C. The State Govt. should make it clear in public about availability of parameters to monitor or assess the net result obtained out of the programme.
D. Public scrutiny is required about whether there is any increase in level of awareness of the people and substantial reduction in electricity theft and increase in collection of the bill. So far as my knowledge is concerned, there is not a single percent increase in revenue collection and reduction in theft in the state. The statistical information about my claim will be shared very soon.
E. In fact, the State Govt. has neither monitored the programme nor made any impact assessment of the programme except arbitrarily sanctioning money to the company without obtaining any documentary proof of the programme.