Power woes: Gadgets go bust as voltage fluctuation reigns over Swat

MPA Amjad Khan warns of public agitation if load-shedding not curbed.


Fazal Khaliq June 13, 2014
Prolonged outages have also halted routine life, especially for people whose livelihood is connected to electricity. PHOTO: FILE

MINGORA: Frequent and sudden load-shedding coupled with voltage fluctuation has played havoc on electrical appliances in Swat for the past few days, damaging hundreds of gadgets.

“Our television sets and refrigerators went bust along with dozens of other appliances in the neighbourhood after a sudden drop in voltage,” said Naveed Ahmad, a resident of Amankot. He added the voltage drops so low that even fans stop working.

Prolonged outages have also halted routine life, especially for people whose livelihood is connected to electricity. “Our sewing machines and other equipment run on electricity, but since the last two weeks, power outages have increased so much that our businesses have come to a halt,” said Fazal Ghafar, a tailor in Mingora bazaar.

Criticism has been voiced against the Peshawar Electric Supply Company (Pesco) and the provincial government by the residents of Swat who complain their elected representatives are not even providing basic rights.

“We are suffering from unscheduled load-shedding of up to 16 hours in Swat. This has badly affected our social, business and educational activities,” Ibrar Ahamd, a university student, told The Express Tribune. “The government has completely ignored Swat.”

Responding to public anger and concerns, MPA Amjad Khan said he visited the Pesco office in the provincial capital where he was assured the issue of low voltage and unscheduled power cuts would soon be resolved.

“There will only be four hours of power outages in urban areas and six hours in rural parts of Swat,” Khan said, quoting a Pesco official. “If long hours of load-shedding do not end, we will take to the streets,” he added.

Published in The Express Tribune, June 14th, 2014.

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