Bhopal: The Central Region Electricity Distribution Company has issued instructions to all its officials that FIRs should be lodged against people who heckle, assault or stop power employees from discharging their official duties.
The managing director also issued instructions to general manager-level officers posted on field duty to review cases of assault on power staff in the past five years. They have been asked to pursue the cases seriously at the police stations or in the courts.
The general managers have been asked to ensure that an FIR is filed immediately for any case of assault or ill-treatment of power officials while conducting their official duties. The FIR should also include sections related to creating obstruction in discharge of government duty, the instructions said.
Attack on field staff has a rippling effect on other employees and demotivates them in discharging their duties without any fear, say the instructions. So, strict instructions to lodge FIRs have been given, said the official statement released by the power company.
There has recently been a spurt on attacks on power staff across the state. In most of the cases, no action was taken against the culprits, while the power officials faced embarrassment and public humiliation.
Power employees have constantly been under pressure from the higher officials for increasing revenue after the corona pandemic. They were given targets for realising the pending bills of consumers after which unpleasant situations were reported from across the state.
On the contrary, disciplinary action was taken against the power employees. More than 850 engineers of the Eastern Region Power Distribution Company are facing disciplinary action. Facing public humiliation, some of them have even asked for voluntary retirement.
The Madhya Pradesh Vidyut Mandal Abhiyanta Sangh had taken strong exception to the development and had registered their protest with the energy minister, besides writing to the chief minister.
‘Staff being made scapegoat’
“The power engineers are being harassed and are forced to work under too much pressure. They’re being held accountable for the losses that actually have been caused due to the faulty policies of the government,” said VKS Parihar, convener of the power employees’ organisation.