Impending ZP polls put load-shedding burden on urban areas

The zilla panchayat elections, which are likely to be held in January 2016, have provided a political dimension to the ongoing load-shedding. It is now the turn of urban areas to take a sizeable burden of load-shedding, as the power utilities have been strictly instructed by the government to desist from “punishing level” of load-shedding in rural areas ahead of the polls.

Normally, it is the rural and semi-rural areas that face the brunt of power shortage when the demand goes beyond the danger mark in the State. There are instances of villages suffering more than 12 hours of load-shedding a day when Bengaluru faces only one hour.

This is because the power utilities are of the view that any curtailment of power consumption in a city like Bengaluru will ruin their finances as high-paying consumers such as industries and commercial establishments are located here in huge numbers. The cash-strapped power utilities tend to ignore rural power supply as it is financially not rewarding.

But the possibility of the ZP elections being held in January has prevented power utilities from ignoring rural areas. “We are taking measures to ensure that rural supply is not totally disrupted. Of course, there is curtailment in three-phase power (which helps operate irrigation pump sets) to an extent. At the same time, load-shedding in other cities have slightly increased as we are trying a balance,” a power sector official said.

Recently, Bengaluru had been insulated from load-shedding despite power crisis during the elections to the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike.

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Printable version | Jun 4, 2020 8:00:42 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/impending-zp-polls-put-loadshedding-burden-on-urban-areas/article7638076.ece

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