Project was almost shelved as impossible at one time due to tough terrain, weather
Srinagar: People living along the Line of Control in Machil area saw something novel on Thursday, electricity lighting up their homes round the clock, for the first time ever. However, their usual state of having less than five hours of power supply a day will probably return when winter comes because the transmission system installed here is vulnerable to inclement weather.
About 25k people will get 24-hour electricity in their homes after years of work of connecting the remote area to the power grid is finally complete. The power supply will free them of costly and unsustainable DG sets-generated electricity. During the winter, though, the government will again have to adopt DG generated electricity.
“The area was connected through the 33KV line, but it should be connected through 132 KV which is far stronger to resist the winter,” a senior engineer who was part of the project told Kashmir Reader. “It may be done in future, but until then, the power blackout will continue in winter.”
The adoption of the 33KV route, the engineer said, was taken some years ago, when providing the area with power was seen as impossible due to the tough terrains, inclement weather, and border skirmishes. According to him, at one time, the idea of shelving the project was also proposed, which was when the 33KV route of providing electricity was conceived. It was then foreseen that the project may fail to work during the winter, but it would provide succour to people at least during the summer, he said.
Machil is the second remote area after Keran to get power supply, but there is still Gurez and Tullail, devoid of electricity transmission. The areas may take another two years to get the power lines, which is four years delay in the project of achieving power supply for all regions across India. According to the Power Ministry, ‘Power For All’ 2018 was set as the year for round the clock power to all of India.
Another senior engineer from the transmission wing of the Power Corporation told Kashmir Reader that the project to take up the remote area of Kupwara on 132 KV line was on but will take some time to complete.