DVB chief not to spare power pilferers

NEW DELHI, APRIL 29. The Delhi Vidyut Board chairman, Mr. Jagdish Sagar, has said that DVB was committed to regular and unhindered supply of power to ``its consumers only'' and ``not'' to those indulging in large-scale thefts.

``Those areas where people resort to theft will have to face the brunt of the power crisis. They are going to be the first casualty of loadshedding. We are neither responsible nor accountable to give them electricity,'' Mr. Sagar told The Hindu in an interview.

Commenting on reported incidents of violence by aggrieved residents in some areas due to power-shortage, he said: ``They are mainly from power theft areas and not our consumers. They do not have the right even to lodge a complaint at our complaint centres''.

Asserting that the DVB had identified as many as 267 major theft prone areas, Mr. Sagar said: ``Whenever there is going to be shortfall, loadshedding would be first resorted to in these localities. It is only later that regular colonies would be touched.''

Arguing that a new loadshedding schedule had been evolved, Mr. Sagar said even though the Capital faced a major shortage for the past couple of days now, almost none of the regular areas had power cuts for more than 45 minutes on an average. ``As a result people did not feel the intensity of the crisis,'' he said.

According to Mr. Sagar, the power scenario was ``not worse'' than last year, as projected. ``It is better when one considers that the entire Northern Grid is facing a major shortage due to 10-15 per cent decline in hydro-generation.'' So far DVB was managing with allocation of last year, except for an additional 200 MW during peak hours.

Commenting on the current crisis he hoped to overcome it soon with the supply of additional 300 MW. ``This summer it is not going to be like last year. The situation will be normalised if we start receiving 150 MW from the Eastern Grid.''

Besides, the Capital will soon start receiving the promised 140 MW of power from Himachal Pradesh. However, DVB does expect some shortfall in supply from Himachal Pradesh due to shortage in their hydro-generation.

``All this will help us having a better power situation this summer. Our system is geared up to take the load of as much as 3000 MW,'' Mr. Sagar said. But he did not rule out unscheduled loadshedding due to low frequency in the regional grid. ``The condition of Northern Grid is not good.''

Giving comparative figures, Mr. Sagar said loadshedding was more last year than this time so far. Even the unrestricted peak demand last year during April 19 and 22 was hovering around 2,500 MW, whereas this year it has been less than 2,300 MW.

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