MSEDCL blames Smart City work for power outage in Pune during monsoon
Parts of Balewadi and Baner areas experienced power outages for more than 12 hours, besides facing intermittent power cuts since Sunday.
“Ours is a 5-year-old residential building connected to a single phase, instead of three-phase electricity distribution. Since it began raining, the power outage has become quite frequent with no electricity for more than five hours. After raising a complaint, we got power back after an hour,” said Smieeta Dimber, a resident of Baner.
Sheela Kocchar, another resident of the same area, had to go without electricity for more than 10 hours and the power was restored only after making several calls.
Pankaj Tagalpallewar, superintending engineer, Ganeshkhind circle, Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Limited (MSEDCL) said, “We have had multiple failures with transmission of electricity, but tried to minimise it by 50 per as compared to last year with a lot of changes in infrastructure in the Ganeshkhind circle, which has 8 substations. We have been rearranging lines, replacing high-tension feeder pillars with ring main units which are much more reliable. Main problem is that our laid cables are getting damaged during the Smart City works. We have asked for dedicated ducts from the Smart City authorities in various places under the project, but are yet to get a positive response.”
In some areas, ducts had been made like in Parihar chowk in Aundh, but it is used for laying pipes underground causing us a great difficulty in repairing faults. Finding faults and repairing it become faster if we have ducts. We had requested for ducts, but pipes for cable lines have been placed in Balewadi from highway to Mitcon, and from Mitcon to Sai Chowk. We feel ducts are essential for reliable and quality power supply in Smart City, according to Tagalpallewar.
Rajendra Jagtap, CEO, Pune Smart City Development Corporation Limited (PSCDCL), said that ducts, as promised, still exist. “We are ensuring ducts for 24x7 water pipelines, optic fibre ducts, Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) lines and Maharashtra Natural Gas Limited (MNGL) lines. We informed that these ducts are ready, but there is no response from the office of MSEDCL. For MSEDCL, we are creating ducts on all new roads in Smart City, to place existing cables, where we are paying more Rs 2.5 crore for two stretches of road of about 2 km. We have gone out of the way to help them with the distribution of system. We are giving them readymade duct at no cost. We informed them about the duct, initially they came with 1 metre by metre duct that cannot be given. MSEDCL has not spoken to me. Wherever the work is going on, we have an agency to work with them, talking to them and then undertaking the work. Since Smart City work involves digging, existing underground cables on roads will also be affected. Officers of related departments should be onsite sharing details.”