Households, shops and small industrial units are affected with the move of the KSEB. While the scheduled power outage, which could be tackled by the consumers by preplanning their household and industrial works, the undeclared power outage disturbs the day-to-day activities of the residents. The undeclared power outages are implemented beside the daily load shedding of electricity for one hour (half-an hour in the morning and half an hour during night).
Housewives and industrialists are worst affected with the move of the KSEB as it dampens all their scheduled activities. Undeclared load shedding was reintroduced the last week and whenever we contact the KSEB officials, they claim that some repair work was on.
Though declared load shedding is only for an hour, the undeclared load shedding, imposed intermittently, exceeds over 3 hours every day, customers said. Irregular power outage damages electrical and electronic instruments also and increase power consumption, alleged N Nagarajan, a resident of Chevayoor, Kozhikode.
Refrigerator, consumes more electricity if power goes frequently, he alleged adding food and medicines refrigerated in households were being spoiled owing to interrupted power supply. According to residents associations in West Hill, Edakkad and Athanikkal, Kuthiravattom, and other regions in the city, they were forced to face half hour power stoppage in every one hour. Women are worst affected with this undeclared power stoppage as they could not schedule house hold work, said Muraleedharan Patteri, treasurer of Residents Apex Council of Kozhikode, who is also an office bearer of Patteri Pipeline road residents' association. Though undeclared power stoppages are imposed mostly during day time, some subdivisions in rural areas impose uninformed power cuts during night hours also. If the government increases the time of power stoppage and declare the schedule we could plan our works accordingly, claims the residents demanding that undeclared power stoppage should be avoided completely.
Undeclared load sheddings during day time affects small industrialists also as many small scale entrepreneurs cannot install generators for load shedding periods. "Set aside the loss of working hours, we even miss orders from our clients as we cannot complete the orders on time due to load sheddings," said P Muraleedharan, owner of Vimal fabricators, Thondayad. We have approached the KSEB officials many a times citing our problems but they are reluctant to address the issue, he added. When contacted, KSEB officials denied the allegations regarding the official communication to impose undeclared load sheddings.
"We stop power in different locations for carrying out repair works," they added. However, officials, on conditions of confidentiality admitted that they were deliberately stopping power supply to save electricity to meet the crisis. The state government is not ready to declared 3 or 4 hour load shedding as it would be used as a weapon by the opposition and it would invite mass protest, they admitted.