The unseasonal rains lashing parts of the State caused severe losses to farmers submerging standing crops and damaging the harvested grain.

But the untimely rain has come as a blessing in disguise for the power utilities that were struggling hard to meet the abnormal rise in the demand during the Rabi.

The peak demand touched a high of 320 million units a day at a time when the hydel generation reached single digits and thermal generation too on the downside.

According to the Transco officials, the sudden change in weather has resulted in steep decline in the demand for power, pegged at 223 MU, and the power utilities were able to supply 220 MU, leaving a gap of three MU.

Of the total demand, generation from the thermal and hydel stations of Genco was 90 MU and 8 MU respectively and the utility depended on the central generating stations and purchases from outside for 106 MU.

Gas-based independent power producers contributed 10 MU and another 10 MU was supplied by the non-conventional energy sources.

The power utilities could cater to the demand from the industrial sector at least in some measure as compared to the same period last year when the industry was forced to face three-hour power cut a week.

But the unscheduled power cuts, thanks to restrictions imposed by the distribution companies which are in crisis due to non-availability of fuel, continue to hit production in the industrial sector.

Transco special chief secretary S.K. Joshi is understood to have cautioned the officials against complacency as the demand could pick up any moment now.

While the demand from agriculture sector was continuing in areas that were not affected by the recent rains, there is scope for increase in consumption in the domestic and industrial sectors.

Mr. Joshi asked the officials to focus on promoting non-conventional energy sources, solar and wind power projects in particular, on a campaign mode.

The officials have been directed to take steps to ensure completion of the ongoing non-conventional energy projects so that they could be of use to the power utilities in times of crisis.