Rs10b more to cut stretching hours of power outages

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 Rs10b more to cut stretching hours of power outages

ISLAMABAD  - The Finance Ministry on Monday injected another Rs10 billion into the power sector to overcome the massive electricity shortfall that has paralysed the industry and pestered the people to take it to the streets. 

Water and Power Ministry officials confirmed that they had received Rs10 billion that would help in reducing the stretching hours of power outages.


Finance Secretary Dr Waqar Masood informed TheNation that the government released Rs38 billion to the power sector during the month of May – the highest such amount in a month.


PM’s Advisor on Finance Dr Shahid Amjad Chaudhry, in his briefing to the prime minister during a high level meeting at the PM’s secretariat, said that an amount of Rs10 billion was being released to the Water and Power Ministry for the supply of fuel to the thermal power plants.


The prime minister directed the authorities concerned that all formalities should be completed to connect the 56.4 MW electricity produced at Jhampir wind power project to the national grid within 48 hours.


The project was completed by a Turkish company and awaited connection to the national grid.


Muzaffar Abbasi, Hesco CEO, informed the meeting participants that transmission lines had been laid and were ready to transmit electricity from the wind mill project to the national grid.


The prime minister on May 20 directed the Finance Ministry to release Rs15 billion to the Power Ministry immediately, and Rs7.5 billion with a gap of few days, to overcome the shortage. The Finance Ministry has released Rs15 billion and sources say that remaining Rs7.5 billion would be given in a few days.


Court Reporter adds: The Supreme Court on Monday issued notices to managing directors of PEPCO and NTDC to appear in person and submit report about the indiscriminate distribution of electricity and the steps taken to improve the generation.


The notices were issued in pursuance of an office note carrying the details that a previous court order, dated 21-5-2013, passed in HRC No.14392/2013 etc, wherein the MDs of the Pakistan Electric Power Company (PEPCO) and National Transmission & Despatch Company (NTDC) assured the court that arrangements have been made for supply of furnace oil and as a result, the system has started generating electricity.


But as the loadshedding and other related problems remain unsolved, Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry observed: “If the order has not been complied with in letter and spirit, explanation should also be furnished as to why the action, in accordance with the law, may not be initiated against the responsible functionaries.” The case has been fixed on May 31.


The Pepco and NTDC bosses had told the court that supply has been enhanced and assured that adequate steps will be taken in the near future for increase in the generation capacity.


About distribution of the electricity the court had ordered: “We are of the opinion that whatever electricity is generated, it should be distributed equally amongst the consumers, both domestic and industrial, so no one can raise objection on the basis of discrimination.”


Notwithstanding the court order for immediately improving the power supply, reports of public protest and agitation keep pouring in the print and electronic media in respect of prolonged hours of loadshedding. It is obvious that the Pepco and NTDC have failed to comply with the above order of the court.





Courtesy:  Nation


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