Photo credit: Danish Ismail/Reuters
Srinagar: With Kashmir reeling under darkness, the government on Saturday evening cleared a tranche of Rs 5 crore for carrying restoration work of damaged electric transformers.
An official said the government has asked the power department to do work on war footing so that power is restored as soon as possible. Only 80 megawatt electricity is transmitting against 1300 megwatts. The electricity shutdown was triggered after grid stations and transmission lines suffered massive damages due to to heavy snowfall on trees full of foliage. About 3500 kilometre length of transmission line is to be restored to end power outage across the Valley.
The official said the governor’s administration has asked PDD chief engineers, superintending engineers and executive engineers to move move out in their jurisdictions and supervise restoration of power. They have been directed to brief power secretary Hirdesh Kumar about the progress after every two hours.
Also, Chief Secretary BVR Subrahmanyam has asked Kumar to rush to Srinagar on Sunday to oversee restoration of electricity himself in the aftermath of heavy snowfall.
“Our effort at two key fronts, restoration of power supply and road connectivity, have to be meted with full strength and with a sense of urgency,” he said and added that the Administration’s efficiency will be tested in ensuring the power supply and clearing of snow from the roads especially in view of the fact that thousands of students are presently appearing for Board examinations.
The Chief Secretary also directed continuous and overnight snow clearance of highways; inter-district roads and connecting arteries without any break.
Kashmir PDD chief engineer Hashmat Qazi said two main trunk lines including Centaur and TRC coming from Cheshmashahi came down after huge trees fell on them, adding that Karan Nagar and BarBar Shah lines are also under trees at various places.
According to him, restoration work is underway but continuous snowfall has made it very difficult to maintain the lines resulting in decreased power supply to just 80 MWs as against the normal 1150 MWs supplied on Saturday morning.
Meanwhile, the finance department also approved Rs 50 lakh each to public works department and mechanical department Kashmir for snow clearance.