TAMBARAM: Frequent, unannounced power cuts in different parts of the southern suburbs of Chennai for about 10 days has been irritating residents, particularly parents of children appearing for public examinations and those in lower classes as well.

Officials of the Tamil Nadu Electricity Board maintain that the situation had improved compared to previous year and attributed the frequent disruptions to the usual “sudden increase in load during the summer season.” But residents are not convinced.

On Thursday, a few dozen residents surrounded an office of TNEB on Nehru High Road in Nanganallur. The residents were frustrated with the frequent disruptions in the past week and on Thursday alone, power supply was severed at least three times.Only after senior engineers assured that the problem was being attended to, did the residents disperse. Officials said a technical fault at the 33 kv sub station in Nanganallur had caused the disruption.

They said staff worked continuously late in the evening before ensuring uninterrupted supply. However, members of civic groups in Nanganallur said problems persisted even on Friday.

The situation is no different for some localities of Velachery, in the city, such as AGS Staff Colony with the households complaining of power cuts on Thursday and Friday for several hours.

A parent in Vidya Nagar, Ullagaram, complained that disruptions in power supply were severely affecting students preparing for X Standard public examinations and those in other classes getting ready for their annual examinations.

His friends in neighbouring residential pockets charged that power supply was being diverted to

large industrial establishments at their expense, but TNEB officials denied it.

In suburban pockets around Tambaram, there have been complaints, but not as numerous as last year, officials said. About 450 new transformers (ranging between 100 kilo volt ampere and 500 kva) were installed in Tambaram sub-division, that included Pallavaram, Pammal, Chromepet, Hasthinapuram, Chitlapakkam, Sembakkam and Madambakkam, among other areas.

This had drastically brought down complaints of low voltage and power disruptions owing to transformer faults and 50 more such equipment were sanctioned and would be installed soon. Work on the proposed 100 kilo volt sub-stations in Pudhuthangal and Madras Export Processing Zone – Special Economic Zone in Tambaram Sanatorium was expected to start at the earliest.

In suburban pockets beyond Tambaram too, there are complaints of frequent power cuts.

A resident of Lakshmi Nagar in Vandalur said there was no power supply for at least three hours on Thursday evening. In

Rohini Nagar, Annai Anjugam Nagar and Ram Nagar, some of the upcoming residential pockets in Urapakkam, there were similar complaints.