Srinagar, Nov 22: Industrialists and businessmen in the Kashmir valley are aghast over power crisis and they say their industrial production is declining and the people are also badly hit.
The Power Development Department has resorted to power cuts in both metered and non-metered areas, citing the reason that power consumption in winter spikes in the valley. PDD officials said that against the supply of 1250 Mega Watts, the power consumption requirement is 1750 MW in winter.
President, Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industries (KCCI), Javaid Ahmad Teng said that local industrial production has declined by almost half. “Workers and machines cannot work without uninterrupted electricity supply,” Teng told KNS.
He said that the unavailability of power i impacting their business and industry.
He said that the decline in the production can force closure of many units if power situation is not improved.
“Industries become first causality in the prevailing power crisis.
He said that majority of the units presently are idling as the PDD was not providing the required power supply to them.
“Every winter we have to face such issues and ultimately our economy gets hit and sadly the government does not prepare for the winter and make proper arrangements,” he said.
Kashmir Traders and Manufacturers Forum (KTMF) President, Yasin Khan, slammed the Power Development department saying the PDD does not adhere to its own schedule, even in metered areas.
“The Government does not care about its own care, either in the city or in rural areas. It is a punishment to businessmen and the people in Kashmir,” Khan told KNS.
“Our business suffers are we have to do online billing. We are using generators and invertors which are in excess of the power bills. We pay bills and despite that do not get electricity. Security forces are getting 24*7 power supply without paying bills,” he said.
“The government has moved to Jammu and left people in the valley on the mercy of Allah.”
President Federation Chambers of Industries Kashmir, Mohammad Ashraf Mir, said that the unscheduled power cuts to Industrial Estates of the valley have brought the Kashmir Industry to the brink of closure.
“The sector which was already under stress due to varied reasons is being pushed to the wall by unscheduled power cuts even during the routine working hours. The augmentation of power infra structure to the organised industrial sector of the state and the demand of a dedicated 33kv circuit for the purpose has been ignored by the PDD,” Mir told KNS.
“The bosses in the PDD have failed to understand the importance of industry in the modern day economy of the state that’s why power supply to industry is not being taken seriously by them and the designated industrial feeders emanating from different grid stations and receiving stations are casually manned by unprofessional switch board assistants.”
“The power crisis in the valley wouldn’t be dismal had the PDD taken timely action to restore the damaged transmission towers on Kishenpore-Pampore line,” Mir told KNS.
The power infrastructure of the valley has been ignored as the handling capacity of the sector has not been enhanced resulting in the present day power crisis, he said. (KNS)