Residents protesting outside the PSPCL office in Ludhiana on Thursday. (Gurpreet Singh/HT)
Residents protesting outside the PSPCL office in Ludhiana on Thursday. (Gurpreet Singh/HT)

48-hour outage leaves over 1 lakh Ludhiana residents sweating

PSPCL chief engineer says excessive load damaged cables; load has been shifted to other subdivisions
By Deepa Sharma Sood, Ludhiana
UPDATED ON JUN 11, 2021 12:59 AM IST

High levels of humidity coupled with a rise in temperature on Thursday added to the woes of more than 1 lakh residents of Chander Nagar, Haibowal Kalan, Anand Nagar, Pritam Nagar, Civil City, Aman Vihar, and Rajesh Nagar area, who had been for the past more than 48 hours experiencing an unscheduled power cut.

Upset with the complaints going unheard, several residents gathered at the Punjab State Power Corporation Limited’s (PSPCL’s) subdivisional office in Kitchlu Nagar and submitted their complaint in writing.

They also raised slogans against the officials and asked them to repair the damaged cables at the earliest. The residents were infuriated with the long spell of power outage and asked the subdivisional officer to address their issues immediately.

These residents also slammed the power corporation officials for forcing them to spend sleepless nights.

The maximum temperature on Thursday soared to 39 degrees Celsius and maximum humidity was recorded at 67%, while the minimum was 44%.

Kimti Rawal, a resident of Chander Nagar, said, “Power issues, along with the soaring temperature, aggravated the health problems my mother had been facing. The pandemic has already upset everyone. And now, along with the power cut, the water supply was also hit. As per Covid safety norms, we have to wash our hands frequently, but when we don’t have water, then how will we adhere to such guidelines? The officials were aware of the fact that the transformer in the area was damaged and unable to take the load. Why did they wait till the situation turned worse? The authorities must have repaired the cables in time.”

Satwinder Singh Bajwa, president of Anand Nagar Welfare Society, said, “Due to the high level of humidity since yesterday and power cuts extending up to 48 hours, everybody was upset in the area. We have been paying the electricity bill on time, but the authorities are not able to provide us with uninterrupted power supply. All my family members spent sleepless nights as the inverter also stopped working last night.”

As per electricity department officials, they had received 6,000 complaints from the area residents in the last 24 hours. These residents also said that they had called on the helpline numbers 1912, which also crashed on Wednesday night after receiving a large number of calls.

Fluctuation damages gadgets

Manoj Dhiman, a Haibowal resident, said, “Due to voltage fluctuation, my laptop charger, TV, refrigerator, and water purifier got damaged. Electronic gadgets of many others were damaged in the similar manner.”

Shagun, who runs a salon in Chander Nagar, said, “Due to long power cuts, my entire business was affected. The customers who turned up yesterday in the afternoon went back as the inverter also stopped functioning because there was no power since Tuesday night. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, my business had already taken a hit, and now these unscheduled power cuts are adding more to the agony.”

PSPCL chief engineer, distribution (central), Bhupinder Singh Khosla, said, “Due to excessive load, the cable got damaged and the feeder in the area stopped working. As soon as I got to know about the problem, I visited the site and repair work was initiated by the workers. For the time being, we have shifted the load on other subdivisions, so that residents can get uninterrupted power supply.”

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