Srinagar, Dec 10: The dismal power scenario across Kashmir has exposed the Power Development Department.
Since the day Durbar has moved out from the Valley, people are facing pesky power cuts. On the other hand the transformers getting damaged has added to the woes of the people as these transformers take time to get repaired.
“Power cuts are rampant. PDD has even failed to implement the curtailment schedule which it had announced in the beginning of the winter season. The extra power which New Delhi had sanctioned for Kashmir couldn’t be utilized due to improper power distribution system being at place,” said an official.
He said, “PDD has no answers as the department had made no preparations. During summer months department slept and woke up from deep slumber when the winter had already set in.”
The official said that coming months are going to be worse as PDD has no idea about how to fill in the void between the demand and the supply. “Common people are suffering while the people at the helm look helpless. They can just chair the meetings and pass the directions but the fact of the matter is that passing directions are not enough. These directions cannot be implemented on the ground without basic infrastructure being at place,” he added.
A local Farooq Ahmed Sheikh said, “It hardly matters whether we get the electricity or not but one thing is for sure that electricity bills will be delivered at our doorstep without any fail. It’s unfortunate that despite J&K having abundant water resources and big power projects electricity has remained a most sought after commodity especially in winter months.”
He said that people hitting the streets against the power shortage has become a norm. “Every day we see people coming out on roads to stage protests against the PDD. The transformers which develop technical snags are not repaired for weeks together,” Sheikh added.
He said, “The lackadaisical attitude of the PDD officials has maligned the image of the government. It has put the question mark on the good governance claims of the present dispensation.”
A PDP leader wishing not to be named said, “The PDD officials kept the political leadership in dark. Let this winter pass. Next year all the steps would be taken to enhance the capacity of the power distribution system in the Valley so that from 2018 onwards people don’t face power cuts. Our government had convinced the Government of India to release additional quota and the GoI had done it immediately. Anyway the people who misled the political leadership have been shunted out and situation would improve from next winter season.”