The Consumer Advocacy Cell (hereinafter referred to as the Cell) functions under the guidance and administration of the Commission. The following are the important activities of the Cell:
- Grievance handling: Consumer Grievance handling is one of the major functions of the Cell. The Cell is facilitating consumers by receiving their complaints and forwarding it to the Commission and the concerned distribution licensees
- Empowerment: The Cell believes that the benefit of electricity reform can reach the consumers only when they participate effectively in the regulatory process. Considering the special nature of electricity, consumers need to be educated and empowered by way of information to play their role. In this regard, the Cell organize consumer meets facilitating discussions on the Regulations and help bring the regulator, licensee and consumer representatives face to face to discuss matters of consumer interests.
- Information dissemination: Technical as well as general information about the power sector enhances the quality of consumer intervention
- The Cell in its endeavor to provide information to consumers publishes an information bulletin titled “Consumer Grid”. This bulletin contains informative articles, facts and figures, news clippings, etc
- The Cell displayed banners and posters on energy conservation, consumer grievance redressal mechanism for information to consumers
- The Cell published a handbook on “Charter of Services for Electricity Consumers” in both English and Assamese languages.
- Monitoring: One of the objectives of the Cell is to conduct surveys to gauge the performance of the Licensees vis–a-vis consumer satisfaction. The process was initiated in this regard and the Commission engaged M/s Administrative Staff College of India (ASCI), Hyderabad to conduct a study on the functioning and effectiveness of the existing consumer grievance redressal mechanism and enforcement of the performance standards guaranteed by the Regulations. The purpose of the study is to assess the quality of consumer grievance redressal and overall performance of the distribution company throughout the State. The Consultants are also required to suggest measures to strengthen the grievance redressal system of the licensee so that the Commission can take necessary steps in this regard. The report of this Study is expected in FY 2016-17.