How a DISCOM reduced Losses from 15.15% to 12.73%
Distribution losses are a significant challenge for Power distribution companies (DISCOMs) especially in India, and they have a considerable impact on the financial viability of the power sector. Distribution losses refer to the loss of electricity that occurs during the transmission and distribution process.
According to the Central Electricity Authority (CEA), the distribution losses in India stood at around 20% in 2019-20, which is significantly higher than the global average. These losses are categorized into two types, Technical Losses, and Commercial losses.
Technical losses occur during the transmission and distribution of electricity and are primarily due to factors such as resistance in the power lines, transformer inefficiencies, and voltage fluctuations. Commercial losses, on the other hand, refer to losses due to theft, meter tampering, and other billing inefficiencies.
High distribution losses have a significant impact on the financial health of DISCOMs, as it reduces their revenue and profitability. This, in turn, makes it difficult for them to invest in infrastructure upgrades and maintenance, which further exacerbates the problem of distribution losses.
Ajmer Vidyut Vitran Nigam Limited (AVVNL) is in the business of Distribution and Supply of Electricity in 11 Districts of Rajasthan namely Ajmer, Bhilwara, Nagaur, Sikar, Jhunjhunu, Udaipur, Banswara, Chittorgarh, Rajsamand, Dungarpur, and Partapgarh. The Distribution Losses of Ajmer Vidyut Vitran Nigam Limited were 15.15% against a target of 15% for Financial Year 2020-21.
AVVNL initiated several measures to reduce these Distribution Losses viz. Special Vigilance Drives, Installation of Meters on Poles, Service Line Bijli Abhiyan, Mini-Lab to analyze actual reading of Defective Meters. AVVNL launched TheftGuard Mobile app to carry out Vigilance activities in the jurisdiction of Ajmer Discom with an intent to ensure a robust, efficient and transparent Vigilance Process.
With the assistance of this application, DISCOM was able to conduct targeted raids, locate suspects quickly, authenticate the location of both the suspect and the vigilance officer, and limit vigilance activities within the statutory duration mandated under the act. The application enabled Structured Inspections to ensure the totality and correctness of data captured by the Inspection Team through proper configuration and enforcement of Business Rules in the application.
This application helped the DISCOM to carry out targeted raids, quick localization of suspects and authentication of Location of the Suspect and that of Vigilance Officer and restrict Vigilance activities within the time restrictions mandated under the act. The application enabled Structured Inspections to ensure completeness and correctness of data captured by the Inspection Team through proper configuration and enforcement of Business Rules in the application.
This application also helped the inspection Team to capture Evidence as Statement/Videos/ Photographs and keep Inspection Report/Memorandum of Seizure Safe and Secure on Cloud Infrastructure. Infact, Provisional and Final assessment order are generated based on provisions of Supply Code from the app itself.
The application allowed authorized officers to access to the Inspections Reports easily and securely to ensure swift recoveries of Theft amount and Compounding Charges or lodge FIR against the erring. Dashboard was made available to all the stakeholders to access Suspect List, Raids Carried out, Thefts detected, Provisional and Final Orders issued, Recoveries made, Cases Lodged.
It is worthwhile to mention that AVVNL filed a record 43000 VCRs which helped DISCOM to not only assess and recover losses. This unprecedented action in a structured manner created create deterrence towards energy theft which helped it to decrease their Distribution Losses to 12.73% against a target of 15% in Financial Year 2021-22.