Srinagar | : Chairman Jammu and Kashmir People’s Democratic Front (J&K PDF) and former minister Hakeem Muhammad Yaseen Thursday slammed the government over continuous power outages that have become routine in winter months causing trouble to people across Kashmir.
In a statement issued her on Thursdy he said the Power Development Department (PDD) continuous to resort to daily power cuts despite people paying electricity bills adding to their woes. Hakeem said that the authorities at the helm are mute as the state brings most of the electricity outside JK and J&K generates less power in winter. “Consumers are facing inconvenience because of unscheduled power cuts during the winter which is yet to end in the valley. Still, we have no consumer satisfaction,” he said.
The unprecedented power outages keep plunging many areas into darkness alleging that there is poor electric maintenance as supply lines still pass via trees risking peoples’ lives at several places. “The department is also not going for the seasonal branch cutting which could help to avoid erratic power cuts,” he said. Taking a dig at the government for its failure to deal with the power crisis especially in Kashmir’s rural areas, Hakeem said the faulty department was lacking in many ways.
The former minister said the department has only 7000 employees in Kashmir. An additional 5000 more are need-based working on peanuts while the department has improper safety measures. Expressing serious concern over the loss of PDD employees over the years, Hakeem said the compensation in case of accidental death and due to electrocution was being delayed. It has been seen that mostly the casual laborers have lost their lives in the process.“Unfortunately their families aren’t covered under government benefits. The compensation policy is inadequate,” he said.
Hakeem said that the linemen have been suffering this fate and unfortunately there is poor safety mechanism in their parent department and many PDD employees died while repairing electricity wires and those who survived the tragic incidents are living the handicapped life. In case of any tragedy, the victim families are made to move from pillar to post and in most cases, families give up the battle, he said.
The former minster demanded for the strengthening of the power supply and its technical services saying the repairing of damaged wires and transformers takes a lot of time due to which people face lot of inconveniences.