Relief in load-shedding

IT was a pleasant surprise for power consumers that load-shedding has been halved both in urban and rural areas effective Nov 08, 2016. In a directive, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif directed concerned authorities to bring load-shedding down from six to three hours for urban areas and from eight to four hours in rural areas. However, areas of poor recovery would, understandably, continue to face prolonged load-shedding until and unless they pay for what they consume.
Nothing can be said with certainty whether the reduction is due to fall in demand with the onset of winter or addition in supply yet whatever the reason one must welcome the announcement as it means major relief for different segments of the society. Frequent load-shedding was affecting almost every sphere of life including industry, businesses, professionals, skilled and unskilled labour, students, farmers, housewives, hospitals and construction activities as suspension in power supply meant stoppage of work involving electricity. No one can calculate personal and collective economic losses suffered during the last about one decade due to incessant load-shedding. One must give credit to present Government for doing necessary planning and also implementing projects with zeal with the objective of providing meaningful relief to the consumers. This is in sharp contrast to the PPP tenure during which load-shedding increased and Punjab suffered the most as its industries were discriminated against in the supply of electricity. The present Government has provided uninterrupted power to industry; gave new connections and even then reduced the load-shedding. If this reduction is sustained during summer and the Government is able to eliminate the menace of crippling shortages by the end of its tenure, it would surely reap the benefits in the next general election. We, therefore, hope that the Prime Minister and his team would continue to focus on not only adding more electricity to the national grid but also on improving the distribution network to curtail huge line losses. It is appreciable that the ECNEC, on Monday, also approved several transmission line projects for different parts of the country but attention should also be paid to replacement of old transformers etc. Efforts should also be made to mitigate sufferings of the people on account of gas load-shedding otherwise the goodwill generated by reduction in electricity load-shedding could become a non-plus.

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