It was practically hell for East Delhi residents who had to go without electricity all night on Wednesday and almost all of Thursday, a day when the city also clocked power demand of 4909 MW-its highest ever.
As the mercury kept rising, frenetic calls to the power supply company, BSES Yamuna, yielded neither relief nor good news as residents went through torture from the heat.
In the morning, it turned out that an electric high-tension wire fell on a building and injuring over 30 people in Khajoori Khas in East Delhi.
Sources said that the protection device, which stops electricity flow upon such accidents, failed to function. The accident tripped supply in the arterial 220 KV line between the 400 KV sub-station in Mandolla and 200 KV sub-station at Wazirabad at 8 pm.
Compounding the plight, a 220-KV line of Uttar Pradesh Power that wheels electricity from Badarpur through Noida and Ghaziabad, tripped near Noida.
The two incidents caused load-shedding of up to 200 MW or more in East Delhi areas, while officially utilities claimed the figure was not more than 150 MW.
“My year-old daughter couldn’t sleep all night. In the morning I saw she has got rashes all over thanks to the heat,” said S Ray, a Mayur Vihar Phase I resident.
Patparganj, which otherwise does not face much power cuts, got the supply resumed once at 2 am but for a brief period. “Night was hell. Moreover, there was no relief in the morning,” Shubhra Girolkar, who is visiting her sister’s place in Patparganj from Chhattisgarh. “In power-surplus Chhattisgarh, we have not faced power cuts in years.”
Call centres of discom BYPL could only say that there was some “technical fault”, without getting into specifics, which infuriated residents even more. “They would not say if there was any chance of the power supply resuming at all in the night,” said Mohammad Haidar, a resident of Mayur Vihar Phase II.
On Thursday, Delhi Transco denied that the Khajoori Khas accident involved any “live wire”, and said it was an earth wire that collapsed after a kite got entangled and caused short circuit.
“Director Operations of Transco and Joint Secretary of Power inspected the area and ruled out the possibility of any electrocution by live wire,” said a Transco spokesman.