Electricity consumers in Mangalore, Udupi, and Puttur may no longer be able to pay their electricity bills in post offices. Instead, they will have to visit the nearest section office or Any Time payment (ATP) machine of MESCOM to pay their dues. This is because a 2-year agreement between India Post and MESCOM will expire in August for Puttur and Mangalore and has already expired in Udupi last month.
MESCOM used to pay India Post Rs. 5 for every electricity bill collected on its behalf. However, since India Post is making moves to double the fees, MESCOM might not renew its agreement.
Managing Director of MESCOM Mr. S. Sumanth said that MESCOM will try to revive the agreement. “We were actually looking forward to India Post reducing cost per bill collected given that volumes of payment made through post offices is high,” he said. “The fee of Rs. 10 sought by India Post makes the entire proposition unviable as the company bears this cost.”
Post Master General Mr. Vasumitra says that a directive from his head office prescribing uniform rates throughout India for such transactions has tied his hands. He said: “The cost of such services rendered by us has already been worked out in Delhi.” He said that he has written to the authorities concerned to make an exception in case of Mangalore.
MESCOM was the first of 5 power utilities in Karnataka to provide such an arrangement for its customers to pay their dues.