Baramulla, Jan 13: Residents of Saloosa Kreeri in north Kashmir’s Baramulla district have expressed resentment against the Power Development Department (PDD), accusing it of issuing inflated electricity bills.
Expressing surprise over the “sudden and substantial increase” in power bills, the agitated residents held a protest here and said that their bills, previously ranging from Rs 500-900 had surged to Rs 1,560, which they termed “unjustifiable”.
This surge in electricity costs has placed a financial burden on many families in Saloosa, where a majority falls below the poverty line, they said, adding, “We demand transparency from the PDD and an immediate investigation into the reasons behind these inflated charges.”
Residents held the newly-appointed Assistant Executive Engineer (AEE), PDD Wagoora, responsible for the hefty power bills. They raised suspicion saying, “Since the new AEE took charge, our bills have witnessed a drastic increase.”
Musaib, one of the protesters, termed the situation “unacceptable”. “We need clarity on how these bills are calculated. The PDD must provide an explanation and rectify the situation promptly,” he said.
Protestors urged authorities to thoroughly investigate and hold the AEE accountable if their actions are found to contribute to the inflated bills.
The agitation led to a blockage of the main road, causing traffic chaos, which was later restored after intervention by the local police unit and PDD officials.
We have taken cognizance of the matter and will look into it, a Junior Executive Engineer (JEE) present at the scene assured.
Notably, a similar protest occurred earlier this week at Shrakwara village in the Wagoora jurisdiction.
Despite attempts to contact the Assistant Executive Engineer, PDD sub-division Wagoora, Shahnawaz Ahmed, he did not respond to calls or texts from this reporter. (KNO)
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