JK Loses 70% Power Illegally

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No Plan To Privatize Power Supply: PDD
Srinagar, Oct 07: The Power Development Department Wednesday denied there was any move to privatize power supply in Jammu and Kashmir even as the state was incurring a loss of 70 per cent power, highest in the country.

“There is no plan for privatization of power in the state as yet. Our power system is in a deteriorated condition. Our department incurs a loss of 70 per cent of power, which is highest in the country. How can we expect a private party to take the charge? Before doing that, we must bring our system to that level,” a senior PDD official pleading anonymity told Kashmir Observer.

“A local daily had recently misled the people by reporting that a privatization plan was in the works, which was completely wrong. We have no such program yet,” he said.

“Actually, we are implementing Restructured Accelerated Power Development Reform Program (R-APDRP) in Jammu and Kashmir to introduce IT system in our transmission and distribution mechanism. Under it, we will replace bare LTs with plastic covered cables to put an end to the losses we bear due to power thefts by using hooks,” the official said.

“Moreover, under this scheme, we will monitor industrial units and high end consumers directly. We will bring our receiving station on IT network,” he said.
Asked about a survey going on in some areas of the city, the official said, “This is a survey being carried out to prepare a feasibility report for Public Private Participation in the state.”

A cabinet meeting in August this year chaired by the chief minister, Omar Abdullah, had approved the setting up of a State Transmission Company (Transco) and two Distribution Companies (Discoms) – one each for Kashmir and Jammu regions, and one Tradeco (holding company) under the Companies Act 1956.

Notably, the union ministry of Power launched the R-APDRP in July 2008 with the focus on establishment of baseline data, fixation of accountability, reduction of AT&C losses up to 15 per cent level by strengthening and up-gradation of sub-transmission and distribution network and adoption of Information Technology during XI Plan.

According to the scheme, projects would be taken up in two parts: (a) projects for establishment of baseline data and IT applications for energy accounting/ auditing & IT based consumer service centres; and (b) projects for regular distribution and strengthening to cover system improvement, strengthening and augmentation etc.

Pertinently, the state government has already set up the State Road Development Corporation (SRDC), a move aimed at privatization of road communication sector.

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