Editorial | Why this shortage?

Winters come to Kashmir with a bagful of woes. Among many hardships that the common people have to face during winters the most troublesome is the power outages. It is a norm here in Kashmir that during the winters, when the electricity is most needed, its supply goes down significantly, putting people to immense hardships. The regular power cuts that are scheduled by the department and announced through various means make people design the life accordingly, but when outages are longer and unscheduled, it throws the life out of gear. The question that naturally comes up here is that something that is so essential for the lives of the people cannot be denied to them. It’s true that the supply of the electricity goes down during the winter months as the level of water recedes considerably, and at the same time the demand peaks.

In such a situation it is a mathematical certainty that we fall way short of the requirement. But why is it so that a place so rich in water resources is craving for power supply at a time it needs the most? It is a question around which we have had long debates over the years, but no actual answers are available. Year after year we are told about different power projects being commissioned but the situation remains unchanged. The region is as dark as it used to be. The governments, then and now, must have given some clear answers on this, but unfortunately darkness prevails here too. The people have been confused about this issue. The technical debates about the power projects, there production capacity, the mechanism of distribution., the elements of distribution loss and pilferage – all this is greek to an ordinary consumer who only ask a plain question: if we have the resources for the generation of power, and we are ready to pay for the services, why do we have to face this shortage. Someone needs to put light on this and reveal the facts as they are. Those who manage the power production and its distribution in J&K must have an answer to this.