Protests over K-P power outages turn violent

Protesters close down Islamabad-Peshawar Motorway in Tarujaba area; Wapda office comes under attack


Our Correspondent July 06, 2015
PHOTO: EXPRESS

PESHAWAR: As the mercury rose throughout Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) on Monday, protests over incessant power outages became violent with the Grand Trunk road being the clash point between government authorities and angry mobs.

Protesters closed down the Islamabad-Peshawar motorway in Tarujaba area while some others from nearby villages rooted out plantations and threw them at the passing vehicles, causing the closure of main highway for almost all sorts of traffic.

Read: Heatwave: K-P declares state of emergency in hospitals in Peshawar

Meanwhile, the Water and Power Development Authority (Wapda) office also came under attack when charged protesters vandalised its office building, broke furniture and tore up official documents.

Wapda officials had to take refuge on the roof of the office building as they watched protestors ripping-off the main gate which was initially closed down to keep the protesters out.

“The supply of electricity is restored just for five minutes every 24 hours,” claimed one of the protesters.

However, officials said the areas facing massive load-shedding are those where people are either not paying their bills or where the power utility company is facing severe line loses because of illegal connections.

Read: Spreading darkness: Protests over power outages continue into second day

Similar protests were reported across the province with the police busy negotiating with protesters in several areas amid reports of oil tankers being stopped to impede the oil supply to the province.

Earlier in Swabi, protestors burnt down the Wapda’s sub-divisional office and the office of an additional civil judge.

Last month, dozens of people were injured and arrested as violent protests over unscheduled blackouts were carried out across K-P. At least 16 protesters were injured and 54 others were put behind bars, including four under the Anti-Terrorism Act.

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COMMENTS (14)

Alter Ego | 5 years ago | Reply @Napier Man: How many people in KP pay their electricity bill ? You cant complain.
A Peshawary | 5 years ago | Reply @Sceptic: @Chachoo: Please quote the source of payment of electricity bills by 10% of KPK populations. These are figures without any basis and recommended by blindfolded Punjabis without any reason. Please be pragmatic in quoting figures to avoid being called as lairs. A Peshawary
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