With Inter exams beginning today, many fear the outages will interfere with their studies

Haphazard outages and lack of public information appear to be the hallmarks of the state’s power distribution companies, despite years of load management.

Though official communication disseminated through the media puts the duration of scheduled outages at two hours per day, unscheduled outages, and emergency load reliefs are making life miserable for citizens.

And with the exam season up ahead, students will have to brace themselves for tough times.

On Tuesday, there were complaints of different areas experiencing power cuts of close to three hours, distributed across two spells — an hour more than the official load reliefs as announced on March 1.

Further, precise schedules for various localities had not been officially released, though they were communicated to the respective substations, leaving the consumer in the dark.

“The schedules were changed many times. Just a day after the announcement of power cuts, we received the new schedules. Yesterday, we were sent another schedule, with outages of four hours. But within hours, we received another, and then another, with frequent shifting of spells,” a Divisional Engineer said, requesting anonymity.

Finally, it was decided to impose power cuts of three hours.

“There were haphazard power cuts on Monday in our locality. In addition to the extension of the scheduled cuts, there was one more outage of two-hour duration in the evening,” said M. Rajeswari from Tarnaka.

To add to the woes, any number of calls to the 24-hour call centre at 155333, would only yield the busy tone.

“The number is not accessible from mobile phones. From the landline, it is always busy.

“The local Fuse-Off call centres too remain busy when there are power outages. There is nobody to inform about the schedules,” lamented C. Venugopala Rao, a resident of Musheerabad.

Chief General Manager (Metro Zone) A.G. Satish Kumar claimed the call centre traffic is maximum during the hours of outage, rendering all 24 lines busy.

With Intermediate exams set to begin from Wednesday, many fear the unscheduled outages could interfere with the studies and examination hours.

CPDCL officials say efforts are on to keep the examination centres supplied for at least one-and-a-half hours during exam sessions.

They attribute the unscheduled outages to sudden fluctuations in the loads and confess that discipline across hundreds of substations is difficult to monitor.

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