On the second consecutive day on Monday, the impact of the indefinite strike by the Joint Action Committees of Seemandhra and power employees continued to cause misery to the common man in all the 13 districts in Coastal Andhra and Rayalaseema.
The public felt the pinch of lack of power, as they could not draw money from ATMs while suffering shortage of water and petrol. Even emergency medical services were hit while lakhs of mobile phones went dead as they could not be charged.
The impact was mainly due to the complete shutdown of the Vijayawada Thermal Power Station (VTPS), Rayalaseema Thermal Power Station (RTPS), Sileru-Donkarayi hydel power station and the right canal of Srisailam hydel project.
Close to 5,000 megawatt of power production has been completely halted, including supply from three private thermal plants — Reliance, Lanco and Spectrum. Over 145 sub-stations have been shut down and the estimated power shortage is almost half of the total State requirement.
Reports of no money in ATMs and inoperative intensive care units and water supply issues came in from Kakinada, Rajahmundry, Vijayawada, Visakhapatnam, Guntur, Prakasam and several other places. Many hospitals ran emergency units with generators using whatever diesel was still available. Officials feared that running hospitals would become difficult from Tuesday as most of the fuel stations have been closed.
There was a complete power cut at the Visakhapatnam airport since Monday morning and the airport authorities are running the terminal with the help of generators.
This apart, most of the express, super fast and passenger trains have been cancelled in Vijayawada, Visakhapatnam, Chennai, Tirupati and Hyderabad routes. Over 150 diesel locomotives have been kept ready for emergency, South Central Railway officials said.
The Power Employees JAC chairman Saibaba told reporters after unsuccessful talks with officials that the strike would continue until the Centre provided a solution to the present crisis.