DERA ISMAIL KHAN:
Scores of demonstrators, including women and children, took to the streets on Wednesday to protest against an out of order electricity transformer in Cha Dildar Wala, DI Khan which was rendered dysfunctional 10 days ago.
Demonstrators gathered at Kotli Imam Hussain and blocked the main DI Khan-Bannu Road by burning tyres. They also chanted slogans against the Water and Power Development Authority (Wapda) and the government for failing to resolve their electricity woes in the month of Ramazan.
Ashraf Khan, a resident of Cha Dildar Wala, said they have repeatedly complained to Wapda about the fault in the transformer, but no action has been taken. Residents have been without electricity for 10 days and face problems during Sehr, Iftar and Taraweeh, she added.
Later, DSP Circular Salauddin arrived with other police officials to negotiate with the protesters, following which their representatives met Wapda official Shaukatullah. He assured residents of repairing the transformer as soon as possible, after which the crowd dispersed peacefully. Protests over load-shedding are becoming routine in DI Khan, especially during Ramazan.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 18th, 2013.