The government has taken steps to ensure a minimum of four hours of continuous power supply for small industries, Chief Minister Jayalalithaa told the Assembly on Wednesday.

Replying to CPI (M) floor leader A. Soundararajan, who expressed concern over the plight of small industries and the unemployment staring at the face of workers, the Chief Minister said small industries would get four hours of power supply. As regards power for agriculture in the delta region, she said orders had been issued for 12-hour supply.

“Depending on the requirement, power supply is maintained between three to twelve hours in the delta region. In the other parts of the State, three-phase power supply for three hours and two-phase power supply when there was no load shedding,” she said.

Ms. Jayalalithaa said Tamil Nadu was a power-surplus State when she left the office in 2006, but it was reduced to a power-deficit State again in 2011.

“We cannot overcome the crisis in a day, a week, a month and even in a year. It will take sometime. I have already explained the difficulties involved in it,” she said.

The Chief Minister pointed out while purchasing power from other States was an option and her government had signed an agreement with Gujarat for 525 MW, only 230 MW could reach Tamil Nadu because of the problems with the transmission corridor.

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