UP: May 2 storm leaves power infrastructure in bad shape
The dust storm that ripped through north India on May 2 left the electricity infrastructure shattered, with hundreds of villages still without power in around 20 affected districts in Uttar Pradesh.
Over 70 people lost their lives in the natural calamity.
Even as authorities are still calculating the loss, the forecast of yet another storm, third in less than a month, hitting the region is giving sleepless nights not only to the public but the government machinery too.
“The storm wreaked havoc with the power infrastructure in 15 of the 21 districts under the Agra discom,” Agra discom managing director, SK Verma said. “We have pulled out all the stops and pooled all the resources to normalise the supply even as the news of yet another impending storm emerges,” he added.
As per the calculations made so far by the discom, 11600 PPC poles of 11 kv, 588 steel poles of 33 kv, 2278 LT poles, 26.5 km 33 kv lines, 233 kv 11 kv lines, 233 transformers along with the double poles they rested on and 194 km LT line have been damaged.
Similarly, seven sub-stations stopped receiving electricity after two towers of the 132 Shamsabad transmission sub-stations got damaged and six other sub-stations were affected after a PGCIL’s tower came crashing down the 132 KV Kheragarh sub-station. According to Verma, the damaged towers are being reconstructed to restore power supply.
The damages have been reported from around half a dozen districts under other discoms too though the Agra discom is the epicentre of the ravages.
“Over 1,400 villages are affected in Agra district alone while other affected distrcis are Auraiya, Mainpuri, Lalitpur, Kannauj, Orai, Hatharas, Banda, Chitrakoot, Hamirpur, Mahoba, Jhansi, Mathura, Firozabad and Etah, he said.
According to Verma, shortage of material and labour is coming in the way of restoration work. “But we are doing our best to normalise the supply in affected areas by May 10 as directed by the chief minister,” he said.
Earlier, a similar storm on April 12 had been equally devastating for the power infrastructure in one and a half dozen districts under the Agra discom.
The state government has, in the meantime put the toll from the May 2 storm at 75 in 21 districts. “As many as 75 people died, 87 were injured besides 332 animals also died and 338 houses collapsed in the storm on May 2 as per the information collected so far,” relief commissioner, Sanjay Kumar said.
As many as 48 persons have been reported dead and 46 injured in Agra district alone.
“A compensation of Rs 5.36 crore has already been distributed to the affected people on the DMs’ demand in 17 districts by May 4,” he said, adding “All possible help is being provided to the victims and their families.”