Karnataka

‘Cotton mills on the verge of closures due to power shortage’

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Owners of cotton ginning factories in the city have expressed their concerns over continuously declining power supply.

Addressing a media conference at Reporters’ Guild here on Monday, Raichur Factory Owners Association President V. Sanna Naga Reddy and honorary secretary V. Laxmi Reddy said that the industrial establishments, especially cotton ginning mills were on the verge of closures owing solely to improper and diminished supply of electric power.

“Improper and inadequate power supply is the crux of the problem. Officials at Gulbarga Electricity Supply Company Limited (Gescom) who were supposed to address the issue have helplessly given up the hope. The people who have invested huge capital in these mills are forced to bear the brunt of for no fault of theirs,” they said. Around 50,000 people who are directly or indirectly employed in the industry, are, they added, threatened to have been rendered jobless.

According to them, there are over 73 cotton ginning mills in the city with each one having an investment between Rs. 1 crore and Rs. 10 crorea. They have a capacity of processing over 40,000 quintal of cotton a day consuming electric power between 10 and 15 MW.

They attributed the dip of cotton price in the open market partially to improper power supply to cotton ginning mills.

“The installed capacity of the cotton processing mills has fallen by 50 per cent, thanks to the inadequate power supply causing drastic drop in demand as there is no proper facilities for stocking the corp. The dropped demand has automatically resulted in its price crash,” Naga Reddy said.

No timings

The owners blamed that the Gescom has not announced any specific timings in a day for power cut. “The power-cut at will, five to six times a day with no specific timings, has disabled the owners to organise the tasks accordingly,” they said.

Deadline

Quoting the Gescom officials, the cotton mill owners said that Raichur was receiving only 70 MW of electricity as against the demand of 110 MW. “The amount is going to be further reduced to only 40 MW triggering a power crisis in the district,” the Guild said. They warned that they would have to resort to street-struggles including blocking roads if the Deputy Commissioner did not intervene and fix the issue.

They demanded the Government to encourage the cotton cultivating and allied businesses including cotton ginning and textile business along the lines of neighbouring Andhra Pradesh.

Association leaders Shrenikraj Mootha, K. Venugopal, K. Gopal and Anand Reddy were present.

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Printable version | Jan 19, 2020 5:47:52 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/cotton-mills-on-the-verge-of-closures-due-to-power-shortage/article6672969.ece

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