For 'least curtailment', PDD cracks whip on power theft

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In a bid to keep what it terms as ‘least curtailment’ in years in place, Power Development Department (PDD) has tightened the noose against the power theft in the Valley.

Officials from PDD’s Distribution wing (KPDCL) said that a host of measures had been taken to curb the power theft ahead of winters.

An official said that the teams conducting ground checks had been manhandled at many places in the past.

They said these issues at times turn into law and order problems and hamper the inspection process on the ground.

As per a copy of an official communication accessed by Greater Kashmir, KPDCL has written to all the district administrators of the Valley and asked for necessary magisterial and Police support to make the ground checks effective.

“This is to bring to your kind notice that our field staff has been manhandled at various places in the past while carrying out inspections and were forced to withdraw inspection halfway,” the communication reads. “As such, it is requested to kindly extend necessary magisterial and Police support to the inspection squads constituted at different levels for tackling any law and order problems and to achieve the desired outcomes without any hindrance.”

Chief Engineer KPDCL, Aijaz Ahmed Dar told Greater Kashmir that the inspection squads had been constituted at different levels.

He said these squads had been constituted at the circle office level and divisional office level to curb the illegal usage of power.

“Our teams have confiscated hundreds of crude heating conductors, pictures of which are often circulated on our official social media handles. Our main issues are illegal usage of crude conductors, heating devices and a second service line which puts a heavy load on our system particularly during morning and evening hours. Most of the households we inspect are using three times the load compared to the agreement of the consumer,” Dar said. “We have written to district administrators for the assistance wherever we will require.”

As per the new curtailment schedule, which came into force from November 7, there is a three-hour curtailment for metered feeders and four-hour non metered feeders.

The officials said they often have to increase the curtailment due to the increase in load and want full cooperation of the consumers so that they would have to resort to least curtailment.

As per the official figures of the Power department, the peak power demand during the winters is 2100 MWs as of 2019-2020 against the agreed load of 1520 MWs.