Urban domestic consumers in most parts of the state are witnessing unscheduled power cuts of six to eight hours a day, while their counterparts in rural areas are forced to go without power for 14-16 hours. While the agriculture sector is getting just six hours of power a day, industry is the worst-hit with 14-15 hour cuts. In Karnal, the industry has been without electricity power for almost 20-22 hours a day since Sunday.
Companies can make short-term power purchases from another state electricity board, private generators or power exchanges. But with dues of Rs 4,000 crore to clear, power purchase is clearly not an option. "Though the state can get additional power by overdrawing from the Northern Grid, it is not doing so as it cannot pay the Unscheduled Interchange (UI) rate of Rs 12 per unit," said a top official.
A power crisis at this time of the year is rather unusual, considering that electricity demand in the agriculture sector is low after paddy harvesting. But with Haryana's share of power from the Northern Grid coming down after several units of the NTPC were shut and snags in thermal plants at Yamunanagar (300 MW) and Kheddar (600 MW), power availability has been reduced drastically. Sources said they had managed to rectify the fault in the Kheddar plant and that it had become operational yesterday night.
"The Kheddar unit will start generating to optimum capacity by tonight and the power situation will improve. We are also flying in Chinese experts to rectify the snag at the Yamunanagar unit. Tomorrow onwards, we will be able to supply 16 hours of power to industry, eight hours to the agriculture sector and 10-12 hours to rural domestic consumers. Urban consumers, too, will get a reprieve," said an official.
Source - The Tribune