WBSEDCL kicks off Rs 1000 cr project to stem power theft

Kolkata
20 Jun 2017

To reduce loss from power theft in West Bengal, the state electricity utility West Bengal State Electricity Development Corporation Ltd (WBSEDCL) has embarked a Rs 1,000 crore project to insulate the overhead cables from physical pilferage.

"West Bengal State Electricity Distribution Ltd has undertaken a project to cover some 50,000 km of overhead wires across the state with plastic insulated AB cables wherever theft is prominent," state power minister Sobhandeb Chattopadhyay said here today. Aerial bundled (AB) cables are overhead power lines helps in stopping theft as hooking, the most common method of power theft, possibility was expected to end and allows better management of the overhead wires for electricity distribution  Chattopadhyay said about Rs 1,000 crore will be required over a period of two to three years to replace 50,000 km of cables with the new insulated cables.

"Power theft accounts for about annual loss of Rs 1,000 crore to the exchequer," the minister said. WBSEDCL has some 3.18 lakh km of low tension overhead wires for last mile connectivity for power distribution. Power theft by hooking takes place from low-tension wires. He said state power department was aggressively trying to strengthen the power network to address the low-voltage concern in some districts in line with chief minister Mamata Banerjee's commitment. The distribution company has also planned to set up 125 new sub-stations in next three years of which work has been initiated for 71. "We expect to add some 25-30 sub-stations this year," WBSEDCL chairman and managing director Rajesh Pandey said.
The minister said that except Hooghly, Birbhum, Purulia, Kalimpong and two Dinajpur, all districts has some pockets through low voltage issue.