Following the latest statement by a very senior government officer that the power curtailment schedule would be followed strictly, it is being hoped that the power scenario will improve now.
It is also being hoped that there is an end to the frequent unscheduled power cuts, which had caused lot of inconvenience to the consumers and affected various sectors.
The government recently announced that additional 500 MW of power will be purchased from centre to meet the demand.
The centre also increased the power allocation to J&K by 293 MW. There is a demand from various stakeholders for purchasing of more power for further improvement as there is a wide gap between demand and supply particularly during the peak evening hours.
The officials said that the low power generation from the hydroelectric power projects in J&K led to the power shortage. But such a shortage is a permanent feature in every autumn and winter when the water level in rivers is low. In future, measures must be taken in advance to avert such power crisis.
According to PDD officials during earlier regimes, there was a provision where purchase of power would be made and used on the assurance that the payment would be made later on. Subsequently a liability of around Rs 31,000 crore was created. They added that all the outstanding dues on account of power purchase were cleared by availing soft loans under central schemes and LPS Rules 2022. According to them, now under the present system, the advance payment would have to be paid for power purchase.
There is nothing wrong in clearing the outstanding dues, but at the same time a mechanism should be at place to deal with power crisis due to the low power generation by projects in J&K. The consumers should not suffer unnecessarily.
The plea by PDD to consumers to use power judiciously must be also heard. Judicious use of power is important at the time of crisis or otherwise also. Some concrete steps must be taken so that there are no power crisis in future.
For that the hydroelectric power generation potential should be fully utilised. More major and mini- power projects should be established. Those incomplete must be completed speedily. Through power sector, J&K can earn lot of revenue also by generating the power and using it here and selling it to outside states.
Being self sufficient in power sector is very important for development. The efforts for more development particularly in industrial sector can materialise when there is uninterrupted power supply.