The sweltering heat across India, rising demand of electricity and scanty rains this summer (as is widely forecast) are likely to worsen India’s power woes. However, the government officials monitoring the situation, claim that India is prepared to deal with the summer’s onslaught.
The situation is unlikely to be as bad as in July 2012, when on two consecutive days, north and east India were plunged into darkness after the northern grid collapsed, officials added.
Senior officials of the Central Electricity Authority (CEA), told HT, that although electricity distribution comes under the purview of respective state governments, they “try to even out” the same by routing unallocated power from the central stations to the states. “The unallocated power is reviewed depending on the anticipated load and availability, and depending on that we try to maximise the allocation to states where we feel there will be a deficit,” a senior CEA official said.
However, there have been scattered complaints of long power outages in the last few days across corporate towers that dot the national capital’s suburbs in Gurgaon and Noida.
The official said that the power cuts that Delhi has witnessed in the last few days have been because of “local issues.” “A power cut does not mean that power is not available. A power cut can happen because your distribution transformer has a problem,” the official added.
Data available with the National Load Despatch Centre (NLDC) of the Power System Operation Corp Ltd shows that on Monday the peak shortage across the country was 3,793 MW.
“It is not intentional, sometimes they are not able to manage minute to minute, but more or less they oblige us. I expect things to happen in one minute, they take ten minutes. Their management is not very robust, so they react slower,” said a senior NLDC official while commenting on over-drawing of power from Uttar Pradesh.
Officials said that the government is also keeping a close watch on the coal stocks in power stations to wheel out electricity. The CEA data shows that the coal stock position as of May 21 for 100 power generating stations across the country appeared to be healthy, with only 10 having coal position at critically low levels.