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Faulty infra keeps Gurgaon in the dark

gurgaon Updated: Jul 09, 2016 08:28 IST
Rashpal Singh
Rashpal Singh
Hindustan Times

According to estimates, around 17% of the power consumed is generated by power backup systems.(Parveen Kumar/HT Photo)

With mercury soaring above 45 degrees Celsius in peak summer and humidity becoming unbearable, increasing demand for power puts pressure on the ageing electricity infrastructure and leads to outages in residential areas.

Electricity authorities claim that there is no gap between demand and supply of power, but the additional load and old infrastructure are the main reasons for frequent power cuts.

To resolve the issue, a proposal to privatise power supply was discussed but it is yet to be taken forward. Besides, a proposal to involve private builders and developers in handling power distribution was also discussed several times. The proposal was to let builders develop power infrastructure in their colonies.

Lack of space for expansion of infrastructure is another issue that hinders uninterrupted power supply. Parts of DLF phases are plunged into darkness often due to outages, caused by lack of space to install necessary circuits.

The existing circuits get tripped due to overloading, frequently in peak summer, an official of Dakshin Haryana Bijli Vitran Nigam (DHBVN) said.

The official said DLF subdivision is selected under the first phase of the Smart Grid project. Power outage due to poor and aging infrastructure is affecting the majority of the city.

“Electricity personnel repair transformers but they malfunction soon. We experience frequent power cuts,” VNK Singh, general secretary of Suncity residents’ welfare association, said.

Mukesh Bhayana, the circle secretary of Haryana State Electricity Board Workers’ Union, said there is a need to replace old transformers. He said that a transformer in Sector 34 subdivision is being replaced and the process for replacing one in sector 10-A subdivision will commence soon.

Residents of privately developed townships are caught in the crossfire between the state-run discom and private developers, who pass the buck on strengthening infrastructure.

A survey by Haryana government in 2010 found that majority of the privately developed colonies did not have the requisite infrastructure, which was to be set up at a cost of `1,465 crore.

Following the survey, DHBVN issued notices to 16 developers. The court advised the discom and developers to settle the matter on their own. Taking advantage of the standoff, many developers abstained from upgrading infrastructure, adding to residents’ woes.

“Power cuts take place due to local faults caused by old transformers and weather conditions. We are replacing the old equipment in a phased manner,” Sanjeev Chopra, superintending engineer (operations) of DHBVN, said.

“Lack of coordination between the discom and developers is affecting residents,” RS Rathee, president of Gurgaon citizens’ council, said.

The plan to privatise power distribution could not see the light of the day as developers were required to construct their own powerhouses or provide land to DHVBN to develop infrastructure, for a fee.