Pesky power cuts, freezing cold leave Valley shivering
Pushing Aside Schedule, PDD Resorts To Extended Shutdowns
Srinagar, Dec 3: While Kashmir continues to shiver in cold, the worsening power supply in the Valley is making it increasingly difficult for the people to cope up with the freezing chill.
On Friday, the weatherman said the minimum temperature in the summer capital was two degree below zero while the temperature was -4 to -5 degrees Celsius in different northern and southern parts of the Valley.
What is troubling the Valleyites most amid frosty weather conditions, are extended power cuts in both metered and unmetered areas.
As per the schedule, officials in the Power Development Department said, the consumers in unmetered areas have to be provided 5-hour power supply during the day time either from 8 am to 1 pm or 1 pm to 6 pm, five evening peaks from 6 pm to 10 pm, five morning peaks from 5 am to 8 am and power supply for five nights from 10 pm to 5 am in a week. While, as per PDD schedule, consumers in the metered areas have to be supplied uninterrupted power supply.
“The unmetered areas have to be provided 59 hours of power supply per week,” said Chief Engineer, Maintenance and Operation, Manzoor Ahmad Saloora.
However, the department is resorting to distress power cuts ranging upto several hours from 6 am to 10 pm in unmetered areas. The scenario is no better in some metered areas as well.
Curiously, according to sources, besides essential services like hospitals, PHE, VVIP and VIP areas there are various ‘blessed’ locations in the city that get uninterrupted power supply. “The localities inhabited by some top-ranking government officials fall in the PDD’s purple patch category where the residents enjoy the luxury of uninterrupted power supply,” sources said.
Ask for the reasons and the PDD officials would beat up the same argument: The energy consumption increases drastically during winters due to use of heating gadgets in homes to counter the chill resulting in wide gap between the availability of the energy and the demand.
“Against the demand for more than 1200 mws of energy as per the agreement with the consumers, the availability is around 800 mws. The gap of more than 400 mws is forcing the department to go for the distress cuts,” said the CE.
Besides officials argued during winters the water discharge falls to minimum in rivers affecting local power generation.
Officials said during peak season when the water discharge in the rivers is maximum local power generation shoots up to around 250 megawatts.
“It falls to less than 100 mws during winter worsening the scenario,” said an official of chief engineer level.
Meanwhile the weatherman said cold conditions were likely to continue in the Valley for another three to four days.
“There will no immediate respite from cold,” he added.
Lastupdate on : Fri, 3 Dec 2010 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Fri, 3 Dec 2010 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Sat, 4 Dec 2010 00:00:00 IST
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