Fragility of power system exposed

The moment even slight whacks of breezes let alone winds of high speed ‘travel’ in Jammu, people take it for granted that the power supply would get disrupted. If it rains a bit heavily not to the extent of raining cats and dogs, power is sure to be gone leaving to absolute conjectures about how long it would be before it ‘comes back’. It may be sweltering humid heat, cold weather, dry weather etc, power supply is bound to be affected. This state of affairs of power system in Jammu and Kashmir, especially in Jammu continues to be as it was decades before despite tall claims of vast improvement made by the Government and the PDD authorities from time to time. The winds which blew on July 2 followed by slight rains in Jammu admittedly were of unusual rage but not so severe that the fragile power system in the city should collapse like the proverbial house of cards. The power infrastructure reportedly suffering massive damages in many localities in the city proper not to speak of in rural areas should be a cause of concern for the authorities to assess the reasons thereof except putting all the blame on windstorm and rains alone.
Many transformers were reportedly damaged, electric poles getting uprooted, electric cables being snapped and the like were reports received from numerous colonies and localities. Repairing and restoring process taking hours at a stretch only resulted in restoration of power in various areas which remained without power supply for 10 to 15 hours or so. Inverters in households supplying power to maintain bare skeleton “services” too stopped functioning as they had to run beyond their capacity making things for common people very difficult. The windstorm at some places causing damages to some houses and walls and a few of them damaging some minor power infrastructure too added to the unpleasant side of some respite from the rains and winds which people got from the blistering heat wave that remained consistent in its fury for days together. The temperature fell slightly but not as much that could give some relief for a day or two to the people even from humid and hot weather conditions.
The problem of power in its multi faceted forms has, more or less, remained unresolved for years together which cannot be addressed only by taking care of short term measures to set right local issues that too of minor nature. While almost each and every house, shop, office and institution have been consuming more power than before and agreeably the supply too has increased but a mismatch between demand and supply still remains unresolved. Each year demand for power has been steadily increasing as is wont with any developing city, state, UT whatever the position but in Jammu and Kashmir, the Government needs to concentrate on power sector much more than what is done as of now. In other words, let at least one or two years exclusively be earmarked for concentrating on how power system was strengthened, how existing ageing infrastructure needed to be replaced by the new one, how erecting poles and fixing cables with them were done in more professional manner and the like. In other words, we would like to ask the authorities as to how long shall the people continue to suffer on account of not getting satisfactory and nonstop power supply despite the Government incurring heavy losses or compensating the huge gap between the purchase price and the recovered price of power in Jammu and Kashmir.
We do not underestimate the damage caused to power infrastructure on account of the windstorm a few days back and the resultant loss suffered by the PDD but had the disruption in power supply being temporarily taking place for an hour or so due to such rare natural acts, it was well understood but what about the overall power scenario which continues to be literally the same what it used to be years before. A holistic approach on consistent basis is needed to be taken and that too seriously, sooner than any later.