ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Political Economy of Electricity Theft in Rural Areas

A study undertaken in a primarily agricultural electricity distribution subdivision in south Rajasthan reveals that distribution losses are not only very high, but that they are mostly commercial in nature. Illegal hooking in both the domestic and agriculture categories is rampant and probably constitutes the largest proportion of unaccounted energy. The reasons for this can be traced back to factors linked to the performance of the utility and the wider socio-political environment. It will not be possible to bring about improvements in the current set-up through primarily technological measures, instead, reform packages must adopt a framework for intervention that encompasses technical, commercial, social and institutional aspects of the problem.

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