Even amidst the nationwide power shortage problems, Kerala is poised to soon become the first voltage complaint-free State of the country, said A.K. Balan, Minister for Electricity. Talking to The Hindu on Saturday, he said that efforts in this direction started about ten months ago with a state-wide survey to identify the low voltage areas.
That survey is nearing completion. The aim of the programme initiated by the Kerala State Electricity Board is to ensure that voltage remains stable all over the State between 220 volts and 230 volts, Mr. Balan said. Presently there are areas where voltage is lower than 200 volts and even 150 volts. These are the areas being identified for the correction process.
The programme is part of a Rs. 1,700 crore transmission master plan targeted to be achieved in 2011. As against the earlier practice of waiting for complaints from consumers, the KSEB is now combing the lines to identify the problem areas. Voltage level has been measured and tabulated at the low tension fag end of all the 42,000 transformers installed in the State.
The minister said that out of the 42,000 transformers, 7,100 were installed during the last three years alone as part of strengthening the transmission and distribution network. As part of the rectification process the KSEB adalats — meant exclusively to address voltage complaints from consumers — will be conducted from next month.
Mr. Balan said the State presently has a 11 kV line network of 46,150 km. Out of that 9,800 km were laid during the past three years and that undoubtedly is an all time record, he said.
Also, out of the 446 sub stations in the State, 59 were commissioned during the past three years. Another 149 sub stations will be commissioned in the State within the next two years.
Work for solving the voltage problem will be given top priority. However some hurdles are when it comes to clearances from authorities for forest areas and railway crossings. But these will soon be sorted out. Voltage stabilization work for the remaining areas will be completed in a time-bound manner.
Meanwhile K. Radhakrishnan, KSEB Chief Engineer (Distribution-South) said a second phase combing operation was done in the southern region to identify the voltage problem areas. In Kollam the Chinnakada switching station has been completely refurbished to remain in tune with the aims of the upcoming model Cantonment station for ensuring voltage and supply stability. The switching station has been connected to the Ayathil and Kavanad sub stations for the purpose, he said.
Mr. Radhkarishnan at the same time said that major voltage problems exist in the eastern parts of Thiruvananthauram district, the remote areas of Pathanamthitta district and Punalur area in Kollam and the water logged areas of Kumarakom. But these areas would soon get brighter with the voltage rectification process of the KSEB, he said.