Srinagar, Nov 27: As the winter chill is increasing, the power scenario in Kashmir is deteriorating fast the Power Development Department (PDD) has warned about possibility about more power cuts in coming days if the consumers fail to utilize the electricity judiciously.
Chief Engineer PDD Shahnaz Goni on Sunday hinted at the possibility about power curtailment schedule in the Valley getting shriller if the electricity demand rises. “So far, the schedule which is in vogue will remain the same but in the coming time, if there is ruthless use of power by the people, the department would have no option but to pro-long the curtailment,” Goni said.
An analyst said that it’s unfortunate that PDD is trying to put the ball in the court of people and is asking them to mend their ways. “The fact is that heating gadgets are necessary and people cannot survive without them in the chilly winter conditions.”
He said that it’s unfortunate that despite Centre sanctioning additional power for the state of Jammu and Kashmir, the PDD has failed to utilize it as there is no transmission system is at place.
The power requirement in the State is met from the generation from allocated share from central generating stations, their own power plants and power purchased from market. The peak demand of J&K during the current year (April to October, 2017) was 2,768 MW and the demand met was 2214 MW, thus, leaving shortfall of around 554 MW (i.e 20%). At present, around 70% of the energy requirement is being met from central generating stations in the state.
An official said that recently a top bureaucrat was transferred for sitting over the project to enhance the power distribution system in Kashmir. “The Government of India had sanctioned additional 792 MWs of power for J&K. The inability of the PDD to come up with the infrastructure during all these years speaks volumes about the efficiency of the department,” the official added.
He said, “It’s unfortunate to note that PDD has taken the people of Kashmir for granted. The power scarcity is nothing new in winters. It has been happening for past many decades. Every year PDD announces a curtailment schedule and people are left with no other option other than to follow it. People also have learned to live with it. Installing meters has not helped the common man’s cause as 24×7 electricity is still a far distant dream.”
A local Farooq Ahmed said, “We were shown dreams when meters were installed. We were told that metered areas would get round the clock power supply but the tall claims of the department have remained confined to papers only. Entire Kashmir is facing power cuts despite meters being installed.”