BAHAWALPUR: Power supply to 857 tubewells of Irrigation Department was disconnected on Monday on account of nonpayment of bills. The tubewells are used to pump saline water from farms, most of them cultivated with cotton crop, and dispose it of into arid plots in Khanpur, Liaqatpur, Rahim Yar Khan and Sadiqabad tehsils. Superintendent Engineer (Irrigation) Mohabat Khan said closure of these tubewells would not affect the crops in the next 15 to 20 days. He said the cotton crop might be damaged from the saline water if closure continued for a longer period. Khan said he had prepared a report about the closure of tubewells and sent it to the irrigation secretary and the provincial assembly. He said the department had cleared Rs5.6 million of the Rs126 million in unpaid bills on Monday. “We requested the Multan Electric Power Company to postpone the disconnection campaign but they declined our request,” he said. Sarfraz Hiraj of MEPCO said power supply would not be resumed until the Irrigation Department cleared at least half of the unpaid bills. He said electricity bills of these tubewells had not been paid since January.
Published In The Express Tribune, June 19th, 2012.
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