It’s time for the city’s annual joust with summer cuts in the supply of power and water. And all it can do is go around aggressively begging for more water, more power and more attention. Like last year, and the year before.
Delhi is going to be short of about 600 MW of electricity, which is a quarter of the demand. Expect crippling cuts and related disruptions — no water and traffic jams because of non-functioning traffic signals.
Expect shortages in water too with no new source added over the past year. And at 300 MGD, the demand is bounding ahead of the supply by several million gallons a day. There is no respite in sight.
Power woes have already begun. On Thursday, power lines tripped 85 times because of supply failing to keep pace with the demand.
And these trippings — which caused intermittent disruptions lasting four hours — will get more frequent and more severe as it gets hotter over the next few days and weeks.
So what is the city going to do? You may like to check your inverters and generators, at the least. The government, meanwhile, would begin its annual around of writing letters – the tone ranging from pleading to moaning.
Delhi Power Minister A.K. Walia said he was going to write to Union Power Minister Jairam Ramesh seeking help in ensuring grid discipline by Delhi’s neighbours — Punjab, UP, Rajasthan and Jammu & Kashmir. “The almost round-the-clock over-drawing of power by these states (from the Northern Grid) has resulted in frequent power cuts in Delhi during the last few days,” Walia said.
The distcoms, meanwhile, are warning of bad days ahead. Said a BSES official: “The demand is already touching record levels. Things will get worse from here.”
The water situation is equally grim. Over one third of the city went without a drop for the fourth day. Officials said Haryana has released water and the supply will stabilise in 48 hours. But don’t think this will be the end of the water problems.