A) Technical Reasons:
I. Transmission, Sub-Transmission and Distribution lines are very old the Conductors have become brittle and cause more loss then is reasonable.
II. With increase of load suitable augmentation of the network could not be carried out due to resource constraints resulting in increase technical loss.
III. As of now the LT network is fairly extensive and the ratio of HT to LT lines requires to be further improved to bring down the technical loss.
B) Non-Technical Reasons:
I. Meter reading, billing and collection being totally manual and dependent on human activities which, to be honest, has not been performed in a satisfactory manner. There are substantial no. of meters installed at the premises of the consumers which are either totally non-functional or have become sluggish because of age.
II. The system of meter reading, billing and collection is a major source of non-technical loss and commercial loss.100% physical reading of meters is not ensured leaving scope of incorrect billing.
III. Unauthorized extraction of electricity by unscrupulous people through direct tapping from the distribution lines is a major problem for the State. Loss on this account of theft of electricity gets clubbed into the category of commercial loss.
C) T & D Loss Reduction Plan:
I. In order to ensure and enforce a system of accountable management the State Govt. has restructured the state power sector through creation of TSECL as a State owned Company. The State Govt. has also constituted the State Electricity Regulatory Commission for the purpose of laying the standards of service, operation, efficiency and economic performance.
II. With a view to reducing the technical and commercial loss, collectively known as Aggregated Technical and Commercial (AT&C) losses, the following actions were initiated by the State Govt. and are being continued by the TSECL.
a. The entire transmission and distribution network right from 132 KV upto 230 volt. requires to be renovated with replacement of old and in-efficient conductors , control devices transformer etc. The network requires to be augmented so that it not only meets the correct demand but also in good for the next 15 years. For this circle wise augmentation schemes have been drawn up and work is being carried out in a phased manner linking resources as may be obtained from the Financial Institutions and Central/State Govt.
b. Under the APDRP launched by the Govt. of India the strengthening of Sub-transmission and Distribution net work has also been taken up in one District and similar work is on the anvil in the rest of the State. Through this scheme many more distribution transformers shall be erected and 33/11 KV Sub-Stations installed for providing a stable power supply to the consumers as also to reduce line losses . Re-conductoring of 11 KV and the medium voltage lines shall go a long way in reducing losses and increasing load carrying capabilities.
D) 100% Metering of Feeders and Consumer Premises:
Ministry of Power, Govt. of India sanctioned two schemes at estimated cost Rs.27.5 crores which covers 100% metering of trunk transmission lines , Sub-Transmission lines upto 11 KV Feeders.
To remove the problem of faulty consumer meters, readings and bills prepared on such readings, computerized billing has firstly been introduced for about 46,000 consumers in Agartala Town area. In this area a consumers have access to information kiosk set up at the collection centres to known details about their electric bills and payments.
Computerised billing process shall be gradually extended to the rest of the State in a phased manner.
100% metering of feeders and consumers together with computerized billing shall certainly reduce the commercial loss because energy accounting and audit shall then be possible to identify the sources of the loss so that the same can be plugged effectively.
E) Pilferage of Energy:
The exact quantum of energy been pilfered/ extracted unauthorisedly from medium voltage LT line is not yet known. It is however felt that a substantial quantum of energy is pilfered by miscreants/ anti-social elements. In order to remove or at least reduce this menace the following steps/actions were initiated by the State Govt. and are being continued by TSECL.
In accordance with the provision of Electricity Act, 2003 as well as regulation of TERC, Department of Power, Govt. of Tripura had authorize Manager, Senior Manager, Deputy General Manager, Addl. General Manager, General Manager (Finance) & Company Secretary of TSECL to carryout the functions mentioned in clause (a) to (c) of sub-section (2) of section 135 of the said act relating to offence and penalties through notification No .F.2(18)-Power/2005 dated 9th Sept, 2005. As per the above delegated power, the officials of TSECL are undertaking different activities like inspection of consumer premises, search, seizure and removal of all such devices etc. used for unauthorized use of electricity to reduce the theft of electricity in the state.
Structured raids conducted by the officials of TSECL to remove such unauthorized hooking, tapping etc. seize such materials and lodge complaint with the concerned Police station. At the same time spot connections are being provided to willing persons on payment of necessary charges so that they are brought down under the legal consumer framework. Penal measures have also been taken to act as a deterrent so that the tendency of people to resort to illegal means is reduced. For the purpose of enforcing raids as regular measures the Govt. has placed one Deputy Superintendent of Police along with some police personnel at the disposal of the Corporation to assist the officials of TSECL in conducting raids besides raids conducted by them. Such operations have certainly shown good result and many tappings and hookings have been removed and moneys realized as penalty from erring persons. The Departmental staff has also been warned of the consequences they would face in the event of their association with any such illegal activities. The marginal reduction in drawal of energy in many of the feeders bears testimony to the reduced drawal of power by the illegal pilfers of energy. This exercise shall be further pursued to bring ATC loss to an acceptable level. Commercial loss needs to be substantially reduced.