Power cuts increase misery of heat-stricken citizens


It seems that there is no end to the power crisis as the electricity shortfall stood at 5,789 MW on Friday which continued to cripple the routine life while extremely hot weather conditions added to the miseries of the people. The failure on the part of the government to improve the situation forced the people to come on to the streets as protests were reported from many cities and towns, including Karachi, Islamabad, Lahore, Hyderabad, Chakwal, Mirpur, interior Sindh and others areas.
In Karachi, the protesters blocked the roads by burning tyres while some armed men targeted the KESC office in North Nazimabad. It is worth recalling that the economic activities in the metropolitan city have been deeply affected as the KESC workers are on a strike to secure their jobs while the entity is unable to supply electricity to meet the industrial and domestic demand. Some neighbourhoods are without power for the last 16 days.
The KESC is saying that the trade unions have ended the protest, a claim rejected by the workers and their leaders. On Friday, the workers surrounded the KESC head office in the State Life Building at Abdullah Haroon Road, the power house at Elandar Road and the workshop at Haroonabad Grid Station. They harassed and threatened the staff members who insisted on performing their normal responsibilities.
In Lahore, the activists of Islami Jamiat Talaba (IJT) blocked the canal road near Jinnah Hospital Underpass while citizens ransacked the LESCO office in Samanabad area. In Rawalpindi, a mob torched an IESCO office and also torched an official vehicle. Similar protests were reported from Tarnol and other parts of the federal capital, Mirpur and Chakwal where angry citizens set an IESCO vehicle on fire.
The situation in interior Sindh deteriorated on Friday as the people experienced up to 20 hours of unscheduled load shedding in scorching heat. According to official statistics, power generation was recorded at 12,394 MW against a demand of 18,183 MW. According to the brief on daily power generation and load-management position, the hydel generation stood at 5,008 MW, thermal 1,546 MW, IPPs 5,743 MW and RPPs 97 MW while 680 MW was supplied to the KESC.