Jalalabad Gas Authority is going to start installation of pre-paid gas meters for residential customers connected to Sylhet City Corporation and adjacent areas with the aim of preventing wastage of gas, ensuring efficient and sustainable use. Gas wastage will be reduced after installation of prepaid meter. 30-40 percent gas will be saved. In addition, customers will have to pay less bills than before – say the concerned.
According to Jalalabad gas sources, currently the number of customers of the company is 2 lakh 21 thousand 459. Among them, there are 2 lakh 19 thousand 764 connections (stoves) for residential or household purposes. The remaining 1,684 customer connections are in various industries, power plants, restaurants, tea gardens and various commercial establishments. There are about 95 thousand connections in Sylhet metropolis and Sadar upazila among residential customers. In the first phase, an initiative has been taken to bring 50,000 connections to prepaid meters. We will start connecting prepaid meters in Sylhet city before Eid. All preparations have been completed for this. The prepaid meters from China have also been received at Chittagong Port.
It is known that these meters of advanced technology based on contactless smart card will be given free of cost by Jalalabad Gas. In this system, the amount of gas used will be billed only. If the stove or gas is not used for a whole month, the bill will not come.
The first phase of the prepaid meter installation project costing Tk 136 crore will begin on April 15. In the first phase, this connection will be provided to the residential customers of the surrounding areas including City Housing Estate, Dargamhalla, Subidbazar, Mia Fazil Chisht, Pathantula, Bagbari, Lamabazar, Dariapara, Sheikhghat, Zindabazar, Sobhanighat, Barabazar, Shahi Idgah, Baluchar, Shibganj, Shahjalal Subshahr and Majortila. Gradually the rest of the customers will also be brought under the prepaid meter.
According to the Jalalabad Gas Transmission and Distribution System Limited (JGTDSL) sources, JGTDSL signed an agreement with two Chinese companies in September last year after calling for international tenders to bring residential gas customers under prepaid meters in Sylhet.
They are the Chinese companies The Consortium of General Metering Technology (Shanghai) Limited and Hexing Electrical Company Limited. Survey work has started for implementation of the project work by December 2023. Among them, the survey of installing 50,000 gas stoves in the city has been completed.
However, according to the first development project proposal (DPP) of the project, the project was supposed to be completed in November last year. After revising the DPP, Jalalabad Gas invited tenders in March last year. It extended the duration of the project till December 2023.
Liton Nandi, director of Jalalabad gas prepaid meter installation project, said that it will be possible to prevent wastage of gas by using prepaid meters and customers will be spared from paying extra bills. Prepaid meter can be recharged by buying credit through smart card from the nearest recharge point. Emergency balance will be available even after the recharge is over.
Liton Nandi also said that free meters will be installed by Jalalabad Gas. The cost of the meter will be adjusted as monthly rent. Customers can pay their gas bills through various apps like prepaid meters. Emergency recharge will also be available in prepaid meters if the credit runs out suddenly. This will save gas and reduce the customer’s bill. The saved gas can also be used in industry and commerce.