Erratic power supply due to frequent breakdowns is taking a toll on the normal life in city where people have been already reeling under heat wave.
Though Panchkula has been accorded with the status of no-cut zone, the power supply here has been affected for nearly one week.
Long power cuts of around 5 to 10 hours a day- in different sectors - were witnessed and the situation was worse in villages.
Residents say the situation had aggravated owing to Uttar Haryana Bijli Vitran Nigam's Ltd's (UHBVNL) failure to fix the faults in time.
There are nearly 1.5-lakh consumers of different categories in Panchkula, which are divided in six subdivisions - Panchkula city, Panchkula suburban, Kalka, Barwala, Pinjore and Raipurani.
Mukesh Chauhan, executive engineer, UHBVN, said the supply was erratic in the past one week due to stormy weather for the past couple of days. "Stormy weather resulted in breakdown of feeders and snags in transmission lines," said Chauhan, adding, detection and fixing of faults had taken time as they were grappling with the issue of staff crunch.
"However, we are trying our best to ensure residents get uninterrupted electricity supply. There has been a rise in the number of consumers whereas the staff strength is minimal," rued Chauhan.
Since 1979, the district has recorded substantial rise in the electricity load and number of connections.
The UHBVNL has five sanctioned positions for junior engineers (JE1) of which, two have remained vacant and only 10 of the 19 posts of field junior engineers have been filled. Though 23 posts of assistant foremen were sanctioned, only 17 have been appointed. Similarly, 22 of the 80 positions of linemen are yet to be filled and only 104 permanent assistant linemen have been hired, though there are a total 194 sanctioned posts.
Water supply affected
The unscheduled outages also affected the timely supply of drinking water, which is supplied between 4am and 9am in the morning, and 4pm and 9pm in the evening. Lok Saravhitkari Society president Dalip Katyal said the erratic power supply had become a bane for locals. "There was no water supply on Saturday evening due to power outage. Erratic water supply has become a norm in Panchkula due to unscheduled cuts," said Katyal.