The blazing heat escalated power consumption across the city with the demand touching a new high of 5,155 MW on Wednesday, the day the mercury soared to the season's highest of 45 degrees Celsius.
While Power Department officials claimed the discoms were able to meet the demand, complaints of power cuts on account of local faults were reported from several areas in East, West and South-West Delhi.
“We had sporadic power cuts through the night. Even in the afternoon there was a power cut for a little over than an hour. Though we have a power back-up, it is incredibly hot and switching off the air-conditioning is impossible,” said Nizamuddin resident Vijay Kumar.
In West Patel Nagar, residents complained of power cuts in the early hours of the day. Complaints of load-shedding were also reported from Paschim Vihar and Outer Delhi areas like Najafgarh and Delhi Cantonment.
Officials maintained that the discoms were able to meet the increased demand and that “there was no shortage in bulk supply and no noticeable load-shedding”, and any load-shedding that “occurred due to local fault was rectified within few minutes/shortest possible time”.
Referring to the increase in demand a power department official said the city's power consumption pattern is different from other States. “Normally there is a difference of around 20 per cent between the maximum and minimum demands daily. But because of the soaring temperature the difference is almost 50 per cent now. The minimum demand recorded on Wednesday was 3,276 MW at 6.49 a.m.”.
“This kind of situation puts extra burden on the power companies. Companies have huge surplus power when the demand is minimum. On the other hand, these companies have to buy power on very high rates when the power demand is highest,” the official said.
BSES officials said the peak demand in their area rose to 1,387 MW in BYPL area and 2,037 MW in the BRPL area. “There were no outages in South Delhi; in East Delhi's Patparganj there was an outage for sometime because of a fire in the Madhu Vihar market. We were asked to turn off the supply by the fire department. In Paschim Vihar the outage was caused by a problem in the 200 MVA transformer of the Bhakra Beas Management Board which was rectified and the supply resumed in an hour-and-half,” said a company spokesperson.
The peak demand in the NDPL area rose to 1,345 MW, the overall generation in the city was 1,266 MW.