Taking a strong exception to the massive curtailment in electricity distribution in Kashmir, former minister and MLA Amirakadal Syed Muhammad Altaf Bukhari today said "the prolonged and unscheduled power cuts have added to the miseries of people amid freezing temperatures in Kashmir."
In a statement, Bukhari said the government must review prevailing power curtailment policy in both metered and non-metered areas in order to ensure supply of power as per the schedule. "Present curtailment schedule that extends at-least upto six to eight hours per-day, apart from unscheduled power cuts has agonized the public life in Kashmir," he said.
The MLA Amirakadal observed that the long intolerable curtailment in metered and non metered areas goes against the government's policy of providing hassle free electricity to the consumers. "The power department as per the government policy is supposed to provide curtailment free power supply in metered areas. But unfortunately the PDD is flouting the norms set for the metered areas by resorting to long and unscheduled powers cuts every day," he said and added that the people living in non-metered areas are facing a more pathetic situation.
"It seems PDD is following a set of unwritten rules after Darbar shifts to Jammu during winters. The prolonged power cuts in Kashmir, especially during chilling winters seem to have become a norm. Not only in cities and towns but the power supply situation in rural Kashmir is becoming more dismal by each passing day. People in Kashmir barely get few hours of power supply per day and face long cuts during peak hours of their working schedules," he said.
"People acknowledge that the PDP led Government has been committed to improving the quality of life of its citizens through higher electricity consumption and providing each household access to electricity, round the clock. The state government must take steps to live up to its responsibility and the commitment of providing round the clock quality, reliable and affordable power to all its domestic, commercial and industrial consumers in the State," he remarked.
Bukhari stressed on the need to bridge the gap, between the requirement and the availability of power in the State especially in Kashmir valley. "There is a dire need for 24X7 availability of reliable and quality power to all households, industrial, commercial and all other electricity consuming entities in the state. I appeal Chief Minister to take up the power deficiency issue with the central government in order to meet its requirements, especially during winters when demand peaks and State's own generation reduces drastically," Bukhari said.