ISLAMABAD: As the power shortfall on Saturday surged to 5,010 megawatts, the President House, Prime Minister House, Secretariat and Diplomatic Enclave in the federal capital received uninterrupted electricity supply.
When the news agency Online contacted the concerned authorities on this, it was told that these areas were exempted from loadshedding due to security reasons. Meanwhile, the rest of Islamabad faced 4 hours of announced power outages. However, Rawalpindi’s situation was worse off with announced power cuts for 8 hours and unannounced cuts up to 18 hours.
However, some parts of the city such as Bahria Town enjoyed a 24-hour uninterrupted electricity supply. The situation in Lahore was no better, with 12 to 16 hours of power cuts. Agitated consumers strongly criticised the Pakistan Electric Power Company (PEPCO) for making tall claims of a reduction in power outages from April 15.
Residents said the officials were not aware of their duties and only knew how to make excuses. They said the Minister for Water and Power, Raja Pervaiz Ashraf’s, promise was not fulfilled and now PEPCO was following suit and giving dates of reduction in power outages. Earlier, Raja Pervaiz had promised for reducing power outages by March 31st.
However, there has been no decline in power shutdowns, rather power cuts in many areas of the country have increased. “It was not for the first time that PEPCO has given a date,” said Mall Road Traders Association President Naeem Mir, adding that such “jokes” were often played by the officials. “How shameful is it that last week in the national assembly, Raja had said the power outages would be reduced by March 31st,” another trader Abdul Waheed said.
On April 10, PEPCO Director General Energy Conservation Management Muhammad Khalid had said the power outages would decrease, as around 1,200 megawatts would be added in the national grid by different power stations. Khalid had said power cuts would be reduced by 3 to 4 hours. In Karachi power outages remained per schedule, with most areas experiencing four to 5 hours of power outages.
However in some areas, such as Korangi, Sohrab Goth and localities which have more power thefts, electricity supply was curtailed for 6 to 7 hours. APP reported that power supply in Jamrud remained suspended from 8 hours to 14 hours on Saturday due to some repair work in grid stations.
According to a press release from the Tribal Electric Supply Company, the Federally Administered Tribal Areas that receive power supply from Jamrud were affected by the repair work. – With additional reporting by Fawad Shah.
US to help beat electricity crisis Prime Minister Syed Yousaf Raza Gilani met the Chairman of the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee John Kerry on his trip to Washington, in which Senator Kerry assured Pakistan of the provision of a module power plant with a generation capacity of 10,000 MW to overcome the electricity crisis. APP