Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah ordered the lit-up VIP areas in Kashmir Valley to be taken off the essential services feeder on Saturday after he learnt that these areas had uninterrupted power supply.
The Kashmir Valley has been suffering a power cut since Friday evening when the two lines supplying power to Kashmir from the northern grid snapped in the Pir Panjal mountains, which separate the Valley from Jammu, due to heavy snowfall.
"I have ordered the power department to take VVIP areas off essential feeder service. No islands of light while most areas in darkness," tweeted Abdullah.
The power crisis in Kashmir had provoked protests and one youth was killed on January 2 in Boniyar town near Uri in Barmulla district, when Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) personnel guarding the sensitive Uri Hydro-electric Project allegedly fired at protesters.
The chief minister arrived in Srinagar from Jammu to personally monitor the restoration of essential services in the Valley.
While waiting for Srinagar’s airport runway to open for air traffic, Abdullah tweeted: "Waiting for the runway to open in Srinagar so I can fly in from Jammu with a team of officers to monitor the situation on the ground…Priority is hospitals, water supply schemes & de-watering pump stations."
On arriving in the city, he tweeted again: "Am in Srinagar to oversee the restoration efforts but we are in for at least a night of massive disruption."
The chief minister then rushed to the Power Development Department headquarters at Bemina. He was informed that 15 grid stations were affected besides damages to main transmission from northern grid lines at five places.
"Redouble efforts to ensure speedy restoration of power supply," said the chief minister.
Abdullah asked the divisional administration to keep men and machinery alert across the Valley to face the challenges of weather vagaries and other eventualities.