Even as rains have gathered strength, the KSEB has written to the electricity regulatory commission seeking its nod to extend the one-and-a-half hour curbs till June 30. But if the south-west monsoon plays true to form, load-shedding would be withdrawn by June 15. The ERC has approved curbs only till May 31.
Last week, power minister Aryadan Muhammad had said load-shedding would be withdrawn once the rains began. "It is true that the rains have begun, but our reservoirs are still dry," KSEB chairman M. Shivshankar said.
"The last two days saw heavy rainfall but our reservoirs received water to generate just two million units (MU) of power," he said. The state's average daily demand has already touched 60 MU. "We will lift the curbs as and when our reservoirs get proper water supply," Shivshankar said.
Last week, water levels in Idukki, Idamalayar and Kallada dams had fallen by 9.72 ft, 19.88 ft and 32.8 ft respectively as compared to the same period last year. "It will take some time for the rain water to reach reservoirs.
The first rains fall on parched earth and will be absorbed. It will take a while for the water to flow into the streams and rivulets and from there to the rivers which eventually will end up in our reservoirs. If it rains like this, it will take some 10-15 days for the rain water to reach the reservoirs," Shivshankar said.
He said the board could be put in an awkward situation if the curbs were lifted by the end of May. "If the monsoon flatters to deceive, we might be forced to re-introduce the curbs in a jiffy," Shivshankar said. On April 18, KSEB withdrew the half-hour morning load-shedding between 6 am and 9 am, but persisted with the one-hour continuous load shedding between 9 am and 5 pm.
Source - Deccan Heralad