Bettering the power scenario
Lieutenant Governor Girish Chandra Murmu on Monday e-inaugurated 10 power projects worth Rs 19.51 cr for Srinagar, Shopian, Anantnag, Budgam and Kulgam district and laid foundation stones for seven others costing Rs 30.35 cr for Srinagar, Pulwama, Anantnag and Baramulla districts of Kashmir. While inaugurating these projects, Lt Governor said that with the commissioning of new projects sanctioned under PMDP, IPDS, DDUGJY and languishing projects being implemented by KPDCL and RECPDCL, the power curtailment in Kashmir would be reduced by 6-8 hours during winter season. He said that the Government of J&K is aiming to achieve the larger goal of self-sufficiency in power sector and stressed on putting concerted efforts towards achieving medium term target of providing reliable power supply to the consumers with no more than two hours of power curtailment.
When Centre announced its decision of scraping Article 370 to end the special status of Jammu and Kashmir, and split the state into two union territories, it was reasoned that the decision was necessitated by the lack of progress and development in the erstwhile state. People were subsequently made to believe that under the new scheme of things, they will witness progress by leaps and bounds — that the public welfare will be prioritized like never before, and that the health and work culture of every single sector will improve dramatically. While it remains to be seen if and when all the claims of increased progress and development that have been made, and are still being made with same loudness, will be realized, one prominent sector which has not created a healthy template for the government’s promises is the power sector. People, it goes without saying, are ragged big time by a really miserable power situation.
Winters are the worst, particularly in Kashmir, vis-à-vis power scenario. This is the time when people long to have comfortable power supply but the reverse happens. Almost entire Valley populace, living in metered as well as non-metered areas, has to suffer long power cuts. They have to bear with regular ‘announced’ as well as unannounced power cuts. The situation in rural areas becomes more pathetic and people, in certain cases, have to live without power supply during winter times. People here have been hearing about new projects and promises of better power supply but Kashmir is a place known for almost every single project missing successive completion deadlines and therefore they take all such promises with a pinch of salt. Now that the Lt Governor has set November 2020 as the timeline for the completion of seven projects whose foundation stones were laid today and has advanced the completion target for two power projects from December 2021 to May 2021, Let us hope that this time, the promise is transformed into reality. If the administration is really able to better the power scenario here, it will definitely have a positive impact on economical as well social set up of Kashmir.