In my opinion, such charging of additional amount for on-line application for electricity connection is ant-consumer practices as :
1. Online application reduces cost of service provider i.e DHBVN on account of stationary, engagement of manpower for interfacing with the consumer, data entry in computerising the application received besides stress on space and resources that may be due to personal visits of the applicant in case of manual submission of form
2. The online application would supplement the efficiency of the service provider.
3. manual interaction reduces with the online operations.
4. It reduces on the pressure of staff for receiving application fee, accounting and depositing and then tracking for its credit in the books.
5. Inculcating habits with the consumers for online transaction is a step towards digitisation and digitisation reduces the cost of operation and best utilisation of manpower which can be deployed elsewhere for efficient productivity.
6. Many operators in fact offers discounts for online transaction. The glaring example is of PSU telecom service operator BSNL. BSNL offers a discount of 1% on the bill amount if it is paid through the online payment gateways. Similarly DHBVN may also consider withdrawing surcharge being charged for online payment of electricity bills.
I have already requested DHBVN and Haryana Electricity Regulatory Commission for the same. more