Snowfall may or may not happen in the winters; the biting cold may or may not grip us; smaller days and longer nights come or not, but one thing is sure in Kashmir – power cuts. Even if nature changes its course, one thing would tell us, conclusively, that these are the same old winters, and that is the outages. This darkness is our fate, and one cannot escape it. The departments and the corporations that are tasked with the generation and distribution of electricity in Kashmir are the proprietors of this darkness. No matter what changes come and go, Kashmiris have accepted this as a norm. What the people ask for, at the least, is that this norm follows some schedule. Some years back when a drive to install meters was undertaken by the government, people were made to believe that metered areas will face minimum outages, and if possible they will be given round the clock power supply. After all if one can pay for the amount of the electricity utilised why can’t he get it uninterrupted. But soon it was realised that it was not to happen, and power outages would remain there.
Then it was told that at least the metered areas will be treated better than the non-metered areas. Although it is a very discriminatory idea but the sense behind this was that installing a meter can be incentivised. But after many years, and after installing meters in most of the areas, the condition of the power supply is pathetic. This year, when the real period of chill and snowfall is yet to start, the power outages have made the life of people miserable. The frequent outages in the metered areas can give us an idea of the power cuts in the non metered areas. Rather than improving the status of the power supply over these last years, since the installation of meters was started, we have seen things going from bad to worse. It is time for the concerned departments to seriously think over this problem and give people some relief. Till then, people would expect that the power department follows the schedule with some discipline.