Power employees call off strike, start restoration work
JAMMU, Dec 20: Three-day long agitation by the Power Development Department employees, which caused enormous inconvenience to the people due to outages, was called off at midnight tonight following an agreement reached between administration and representatives of the striking employees.
Click here to watch video
An end to the agitation, which had prompted the administration to call Army Engineering Wing for restoration of power supply in many areas, was announced at midnight tonight by Divisional Commissioner Jammu Dr. Raghav Langer and Sachin Tickoo, one of the leaders of striking employees, in their separate interactions with the media persons.
“The strike has been called off. An agreement has been reached with the striking employees and they will resume work immediately. The employees have been directed to restore power supply in the affected areas forthwith so that the people don’t face any further problems,” Dr. Langer said.
Click here to watch video
Asserting that the Government was positive towards the Power employees and their major demands had already been conceded, the Divisional Commissioner said that cause of the employees and power reforms will go together.
Sachin Tickoo, one of the leaders of striking employees, said the deadlock ended following marathon meetings between civil administration and representatives of the Unions of striking employees.
Confirming that the agitation has been called off, Tickoo said they are satisfied with the administration’s response towards their demands.
He said their all issues have been addressed.
On joint venture, he said it has been put on hold and all stakeholders will examine it afresh.
Tickoo said the Government will create CPOs in every district .
He said the staff will start restoration of power supply where it has been affected immediately.
Earlier, in the day, EME wing of Army and Powergrid employees, the Government today engaged ITI faculty and students of Electrical trade for power restoration across J&K while the residents of many cities and towns in Jammu and Kashmir regions continued to face power on third consecutive day as Power Development Department (PDD) employees continued their strike against the proposed privatisation of electricity in the Union Territory besides other demands.
The Army personnel from EME and MES wings besides those from Powergrid Corporation and NHPC claimed to have restored over 70 percent of the feeders and repaired faults since last night. They claimed that in Jammu, 132 feeders out of the 153 which had gone out of order, have been restored by 7.30 pm tonight. They claimed that remaining 13 % will also be restored by mid night.
An official spokesman told the Excelsior that at some places including power receiving stations, some people have tried to sabotage and fiddle with the system. The Government was keeping close watch over such acts of some miscreants. Giving details of restoration work in Jammu region, he said out of 1096 feeders of 11 kv voltage level, 712 were functional and 384 faulty. These area being restored shortly. He further disclosed that out of the total 139 feeders of 33 kv in Jammu, 120 were functional and hardly 19 out of order.
He further claimed that today power supply to many areas of Jammu region including, Ramnagar, Samba, Industrial area of Udhampur, Chenani, Kathua, Janglote, Mendhar, many parts of Rajouri and Doda, Bhalwal, Thathar, Ban Talab, Muthi, Roopnagar, Chinore, Durga Nagar, parts of Janipur, Trikuta Nagar, Gangyal, Chhani, Greater Kailash, Railway Complex and Subash Nagar was restored.
Meanwhile, All India president of Power Engineers Federation Shailender Dubey from Lucknow (UP) was also camping in Jammu for the last two days and leading the protest. Many Trade Union leaders across J&K UT have rendered full support to the Power employees on agitation.
The protesting employees this evening tried to take out candle march from dharna site at Chief Engineer’s office, Canal Road but strong contingent of police led by SSP Jammu and Additional Deputy Commissioner did not allow them to move out of the gate. Their proposed candle march from Canal Head towards Science College Road and Jewel Chowk was foiled at around 7 pm.
Meanwhile, people held protests at various places against the Government for failure of power supply to many areas. Due to many local faults, the power supply to several areas of Jammu City and other towns and blocks could not be restored. The protesters were raising slogans against the Government. They alleged that despite tall claims of the Administration many areas were still without power and water supply for the last three days. The business, industrial activity, education and health care sectors has also been badly hit with the ongoing strike.
Most of the 20 districts of Jammu and Kashmir are facing power breakdown since Saturday night while it has been restored in some areas in Jammu and Srinagar and also in few other districts, the sources said.
Parts of Kashmir continue to be plunged into darkness due to strike by the Power Development Department (PDD) employees against privatization of the power sector in Jammu and Kashmir while government is roping in the services of engineering students to restore power.
The power supply has not been restored to many areas especially rural in Kashmir where snags have developed.
The power supply is also affected in parts of Srinagar, Budgam, Ganderbal, Pulwama, Kulgam, Shopian, Baramulla, Bandipora and Kupwara.
In Baramulla town the area of Faqirwani,Aribab Colony,Suhail Colony, Shahihadan Colony and Baghi Islam are without power. In Srinagar many areas, mostly on outskirts, were without power during the day time for last three days.
Police in some areas were seen repairing the power lines and restoring the power supply.
Divisional Commissioner (Div Com) Kashmir, Pandurang K Pole visited several grid stations in Anantnag today.
Inspecting the grid station at Sarnal, the Div Com was apprised that the station is functioning normally. He was informed that service delivery is being carried out as per schedule.
The Div Com interacted with the on duty staff and asked them to be punctual in carrying out their duties. He also visited the grid station at Nai Basti Khanabal and inspected the functioning of the grid station.
Speaking on the occasion, the Div Com said that regular power supply is essential during harsh winters and the concerned officials should ensure that curtailment schedule is adhered to.
Deputy Commissioner Srinagar, Mohammad Aijaz Asad today conducted a surprise visit to various Power Receiving Stations to oversee the power supply arrangements especially with regard to the critical and emergency feeders in Srinagar district.
Managing Director KPDCL, Basharat Qayoom, Chief Engineer, Aijaz Ahmad Dar, Chief Planning Officer Srinagar, Mohammad Yaseen Lone and other concerned accompanied the Deputy Commissioner during the visit.