This summer, it appears, will be the worst combination of acute power shortage and blistering heat for the people of Erode district.
Most parts of the district witness long hours of power outages and a searing heat wave, which have put thousands of residents to untold hardships.
Though it has been announced that the total period of load shedding will be three hours per day, the Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation (TANGEDCO) is not able to keep up its promise.
Many parts in Erode town and its suburbs experience frequent disruptions in electricity supply.
Apart from regular load shedding, we experience unannounced power cuts ranging from 30 minutes to three hours a day, residents point out.
With the mercury soaring to new heights everyday, people are spending their day and night under sweltering heat and without power for longer durations.
The prolonged interruptions in electricity supply has also taken a heavy toll on the agriculture and industries, particularly the weaving sector.
The TNGEDCO had reduced the duration of three-phase supply for farming in most parts of the district. This had affected the agricultural activities.
The farmers were not able to operate their pump sets continuously.
“If the situation remains the same, we will not be able to water the crops properly,” A. Palanisamy, a farmer in Gobichettipalayam points out.
The State Government had earlier promised that it would provide uninterrupted three-phase power supply to the farmers for six hours during the day and four hours during the night. “The government has failed to honour its promise,” farmers charge.
The power crisis had also hit the industrial operations in the district.
The powerloom sector was the worst affected. The district has a large number of small and medium powerloom units.
A majority of the units depend on the power supply from the TANGEDCO as they cannot afford to install generators.
“The productivity in the small and medium units had come down significantly due to the continuing power crisis,” weavers here point out.
Many weaving units in the district are facing difficulties in completing their orders in time.
“We are already under severe stress due to sharp increase in the yarn prices. The long hours of power outage had only added to our woes,” weavers said.
People have appealed to the TANGEDCO to bring in concrete measures to sort out the power crisis. The Corporation should also ensure that there are no unannounced power cuts in the district.