End power outages

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AMIDST rising mercury in the peak summer season, prlonged power outages of ten to fifteen hours has made the life of people miserable.

The situation in rural and far-flung areas is worse. It is surprising that country has sufficient installed capacity of power generation, yet not enough is being generated to meet the rising demand.

Finally taking notice of the situation, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif while chairing a meeting on Saturday directed authorities concerned to come up with an emergency plan aimed at reducing electricity load shedding.

He said power outages of more than two hours would not be acceptable. Ever since coming to power, the coalition government has struggled to cope with electricity load shedding.

It was promised that there would be no load shedding from 1st of May. There was no load shedding during Eid-ul-Fitr holidays but subsequently power situation has only worsened.

It has been reported now that electricity shortfall has surged to 7,200 megawatt. The country’s overall power generation has been recorded at twenty thousand megawatts while consumption is over 27,200.

The country has a capacity of generating about thirty five thousand megawatts, which is sufficient to meet current demand.

It appears that either due to shortage of fuel or some kind of fault, certain power plants are not operating- something which is not tolerable given the heat wave that has gripped different parts of the country.

National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) has issued a recent alert warning that heat wave will persist in coming week.

Situation warrants urgent action on part of relevant authorities to make all the power plants functional at the earliest.

This is important to save people from deadly heat wave as well as to ensure that our industries are functional which provide job opportunities to people as well as bring foreign exchange through exports.

Any failure on this front will only further dent popularity of the coalition government which is already faced with challenge of price hike after significant increase in prices of petroleum products, electricity and gas.

We will suggest PM Shehbaz Sharif to personally monitor electricity situation on daily basis and those officials showing negligence in their duties must be suspended.