As soon as the sun sets, darkness engulfs Uttar Pradesh's Karela village in Sambhal district. While the electric poles were set up 10 years ago, dejected villagers have lost all hope of seeing any light.
Athar Singh, a villager, told ANI, "The electricity poles were installed years back. I have gone to the councillor's office several times to enquire about electricity connection, but he always says that he would look into the matter."
"On top of that, the authorities are forcing us to pay a bill ranging from Rs 40,000 to Rs 60,000, when we don't have any electricity at all," he alleges, adding, "this is unfair."
Akash, a class 5 student of Karela village said that he is unable to study in the evening.
"I find great difficulty in studying in the evening. We have a light at home which uses kerosene for charging and lasts for three days. We have to again charge it using kerosene."
Dilshadi, a housewife from the village, added that it becomes difficult for her family to run errands. They use candles while cooking and children are unable to study in the evenings, she said.
"There is no electricity in our village. The authorities have installed electric poles, but they did not lay down the power lines," she said.
"The authorities have asked us to pay an electricity bill. This is quite strange since we don't have any electricity," Dilshadi told ANI.
A former councillor from Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), Girish Chandra, blamed Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Samajwadi Party (SP) governments for not providing electricity to Karela village, adding that they made "empty promises" to people, during the previous assembly elections.
"During BSP's rule, we had electrified 15 villages. But after we were voted out of power, the SP and the BJP governments were supposed to provide connection.," Mr Chandra told ANI.
The minister further said that the SP and the BJP have played vote-bank politics by making hollow promises to villagers.
"I urge the BJP to provide electricity to the village soon and not leave the people in darkness," Mr Chandra said.
Vinod Kumar, an Executive Engineer of the area, said, "The project of electrification in Baniakhera block was given to a company under Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Yojana but it could not finish the process. The work will be completed under Saubhagya Yojana, survey for which will begin in May."
(With Inputs From ANI)