Powerless Kashmir

Powerless Kashmir
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Amid and against the backdrop of an early winter setting in Kashmir, with all its attendant and concomitant issues, Kashmir is powerless. (This assertion is not in the nature of a double entendre or a word play; it is meant to convey the nagging fact of power blackouts and outages here). While it might be understandable that there could(or would) be scheduled power cuts during winter because of peak demand and supply demand mismatches(which is not to bail out the power department but to put matters into perspective) but unscheduled power cuts are a travesty and add to the miseries of the people during the harsh wintry conditions. This age old fact about harsh winter conditions in the vale has either not sunk into minds of those responsible for the power mess or they choose to elide over this fact and ignore it. The end result is that people suffer because of the insouciance of the administration. If there are supply and demand troughs in Kashmir because of obvious reasons why, the question is , has not this nagging issue been addressed? While tepid efforts have been made, but these merely amount to tinkering at the margins. The irony is that Kashmir has abundant resources to deal with our multiple power crises. But these are not employed or if efforts are made, they flounder. One answer to the problem lies in increasing the power generation capacity of the region. For this to happen, more power generation units must be developed and then robust distribution facilities also crystallized. The responsibility of developing power generation capacity must be devolved to our young and budding entrepreneurs and not non native companies whose sole motive appears to be just making money. And, once problems, cost inflation, problems in project management and so on set in, or prosaic corruption, set in , they take flight and abandon these projects. It is then about time that Kashmir’s entrepreneurs set their sights high and take on projects that redound to the welfare of the people and , of course, profits for these entrepreneurs. This, naturally will take time. To address the immediate problems , the Power Development Department(PDD) must weed out the inefficiencies in the power system of Kashmir and ensure that there is reasonable disbursal and distribution of electricity during times when it is needed the most: winter. Let not people suffer for and over the inefficiencies of those who are in charge of electricity generation and distribution!