PDD is the much talked about agency in the State not for appreciation but for resentment of the general public. The reason is that the department has not been able to bring about meaningful changes in its functioning, particularly in power generation and distribution. The question is that of upgrading the entire system along modern lines as is the case in other cities and states of the country. We have the good or the bad name of having all the five northern Indian rivers flowing through the territory of the state and ending up in Pakistan. We have the Indus Water Treaty with Pakistan but despite that we are not able to make the optimum use of our river waters. The result is that a State of the Indian Union which is home to four rivers is deficit of electric power for supply to our villages and hamlets or to our industrial units.
It is a travesty that despite the fact that the Union Government has gone out of the way in providing us funding for improving generation of power, transmission of power and upgrading our entire energy management system. But we have not been able to utilize nearly 5000 crore rupees sanctioned by the Union Government for upgrading of our power supply system. Three years have passed when two power upgrading schemes besides the Prime Minister’s Development Package were announced. In 2015, PM announced Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Yojana (DDUGJY) to carry out power sector reforms in the rural areas with a view to ensure round the clock electricity supply to the rural households and farmers.
Another scheme titled Integrated Power Development Scheme (IPDS), a new avatar of R-APDRP Scheme, was also launched for reduction of AT&C losses, up-gradation of infrastructure; IT based billing and auditing system and collection efficiency. Whopping funds were made available to all States including Jammu and Kashmir under these two schemes. Besides the two, we already have the PM’s Development Package for our State which also frugally provides funds for improvement of our power system. Yet despite all these pre-requisites in hand, we have not been able to utilize the funds and ours is the only State that has failed to utilize the money and bring electricity to the villagers and backward people in far off nooks and corners of the State. Our negative approach and non-working culture is of the extent that the State has not been able even to strike a deal with the Central Public Sector Undertakings (CPSUs) for power infrastructure upgrading under DDUGJY and IPDS so as to avoid further delay in rolling out of these Centrally Sponsored Schemes.
This failure is a glaring example of inefficiency of the State administration. In final analysis we shall repeat our oft spoken word that a committee should be constituted with the terms of reference to probe why Centrally sponsored projects generally either fail or are abandoned half way in our State? This is a serious question and we want to know the reply.