The 40-day harshest winter period in Kashmir, known in the local parlance as ‘Chillai-Kalan’, is almost a month away. It’s followed by a 20-day ‘Chillai-Khurd’ (small cold) and a 10-day long ‘Chillai-Bachha’ (baby cold). It does not however mean that winter is yet to start. Given the present weather condition, it rather signifies that harsh winter is all but going to be harsher. The harshness invariably gets stronger in absence of electricity and despite the claims by the successive governments regarding improvement in the scenario, it remains the same as in the past. Despite augmenting power supply, the uninterrupted supply or providing it even as per the time schedule announced by the PDD seems a far cry. Rather it appears to be unattainable. The people have been craving to see the concerned department improves its performance, and to provide electricity for a reasonable time length. The absence of electricity makes life miserable, irrespective of whether it is spring, summer, autumn, or winter. However, in terms of severity, it ought to be winters. The scale of hardships caused by it is not something one needs to explain. The importance or dependency on electricity is simply more in contemporary times than the past when people would do with burning woods or utilize charcoal differently. This year, the dependency for a few is more than fighting the harshness of the winter. They need electricity for survival against covid-19 giving importance to oxygen they need through machine run by the electrical energy.
Routines of life are determined by the supply of electricity. Almost all aspects of life are reliant on power. The household chores are now entirely dependent on electricity. The administration must bear that this is the season for examination, and students have to put in extra effort in their studies which is inevitably dependent on light. Without electricity, everything turns upside down.
The water level in the rivers recedes the generation of power substantially and as a consequence, there is less electricity to be distributed. The reasons for the shortfall are well known. The problem has been discussed over and over again. Unfortunately, the solution eludes, the reasons are well known also. Given the importance, the frequent and unscheduled power cuts are nothing short of violating the basic requirements of life. The justification that people put a lot of burden on the system is out of place as it is for the government to ensure it is judiciously used. The administration should ensure the primary supply and that too without pesky cuts.