Faulty meter raises water bill to Rs 7,000

A family of seven in South Bengaluru's Kumaraswamy Layout says its water bill went up from just Rs 400 in September 2017 to almost Rs 7,000 in January 2018 because of a faulty meter installed by the Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB). Image for representation

A family of seven in South Bengaluru's Kumaraswamy Layout says its water bill went up from just Rs 400 in September 2017 to almost Rs 7,000 in January 2018 because of a faulty meter installed by the Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB). 

The house owned by Venkatesh Naidu has a borewell besides the BWSSB's water and sanitary connections. The family uses the Cauvery water just twice a week. "My water bill was around Rs 400 until September last year. In October, I was billed Rs 908. I paid up thinking we may have consumed more water that month. In November 2017, the bill rose to Rs 1,535," he told DH. 

Naidu said he brought the "anomaly" to the notice of the meter reader but the latter didn't respond positively. Naidu just paid up. The big shock came in January 2018 when he was billed Rs 6,991. 

Naidu, an engineer by training, then checked the meter and was shocked to see the reading showing 3,000 litres as against the "reasonable" 710 litres. 

He made a complaint and visited the BWSSB's office in Padmanabhanagar. The staff visited his house and asked him to inspect the sump and the safety valve. They asked him to pay 50% of the bill until the complaint is disposed of in the water adalat. 

The family stopped using the Cauvery water. In the biggest shock, though the BWSSB staff failed to rectify the anomaly in the bill, they charged Naidu interest on the unpaid amount. The meter reader even threatened to disconnect the connection if Naidu doesn't pay. 

Naidu said he wanted to raise the matter at the water adalat but it had not been held since February as the officer was on election duty. 

When contacted, the BWSSB engineer concerned promised to look into the matter and said if there was any problem with the water meter, it would be tested in the laboratory and rectified.

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Faulty meter raises water bill to Rs 7,000

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