Lights out: Besham faces power outages for 22 hours

Locals threaten to block Karakoram Highway


Umar Bacha January 01, 2016
Locals threaten to block Karakoram Highway. PHOTO: ARIF SOOMRO/EXPRESS/FILE

SHANGLA: Residents of Besham, Shangla experienced 22-hours of load-shedding.

Insiders told The Express Tribune on Friday, prolonged power outages brought business activities to a screeching halt. The locals have warned that if the power situation is not immediately addressed they will be forced to block Karakoram Highway and hold a demonstration.

Consumers belonging to various parts of the district said Pesco has once again resorted to load-shedding. This has caused countless difficulties for consumers. A large number of traders had voiced concerns about the matter as their businesses had been affected by the prolonged blackouts.

Mohammad Rafiq, a local car painter, said his business requires uninterrupted power supply and frequent outages have dealt a critical blow to his work. “Even the UPS system cannot work for a long time,” he said. He added a large number of electrical appliances have stopped functioning due to load-shedding.

Saeed Afzal, another trader, complained that they pay electricity bills regularly, but cannot watch TV due to power cuts. “Meter readings are seldom recorded,” he said. “The power supply company simply sends bills on average.”

Another consumer Umar said, “I got a new connection in January 2014. After three months Pesco sent me a bill of Rs57,000.” He said before this, he has paid all the bills on time. “I visit Pesco sub office daily,” he said. “But they have not corrected my bill. Now they are charging thousands as fine.”

Meanwhile, residents of Besham have urged the government and Wapda officials to take notice of the situation or they will be compelled to block Karakoram Highway.

Published in The Express Tribune, January 2nd, 2016.

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