By Our Correspondent
GILGIT: The power generation in Gilgit has fallen from over 35 megawatt to 28 megawatt owing to frozen glaciers, says deputy commissioner Hamza Salick as he explains the causes behind the extended loadshedding in the region.
The shortage of power hits hard routine life in winters forcing people to depend on firewood that ultimately leads to deforestation.
“The excessive use of power for heating and cooking has also aggravated the situation,” Salick told reporters in his office on Thursday.
Executive engineer Hamid Hussain of power department also attended the briefing which was first since winter began and shortage of power increased up to 15 hours a day in the city where more than 25000 consumers use the facility.
In an attempt to curb misuse of power, Salick said special teams were formed which raided houses and confiscated handmade heaters and rods. “By doing that we were able to save about 1500 megawatts of power.”
The officials said every household was allowed to use up to 10 ampere of electricity and corssing the limit would lead to disconnection of line. “In the last one week, power lines of 1661 households have been disconnected,” said the executive engineer, adding 283 high power heaters have also been confiscated.
According to minister information Iqbal Hassan, federal government has allocated 5 billion rupees under public sector development program to overcome the power crisis in Gilgit-Baltistan.
The funds will be used to generate hydro energy, the minister told reporters recently inn Gilgit, adding Gilgit-Baltistan government will also spend three-billion rupees to establish a regional grid station in addition to establishing additional sources of energy generation.
Gilgit-Baltistan has the potential to produce over 45,000 Megawatts of electricity. However, due to lack of investment in the power sector is said to be behind the crisis which force people to increasingly depend on liquefied petroleum gas and firewood.
Published in the Outpost on December 2, 2016