KE informs low-loss areas to face unannounced loadshedding

K-Electric (KE) informed on Wednesday that according to the new load shedding regime, there will be 3 hours of daily loadshedding in Karachi’s previously exempted, low-loss, areas.

According to a spokesperson, this new design is in order to allow a few hours relief to high-loss areas like Baldia Town, Lyari, New Karachi, Malir, Qauidabad, where loadshedding has been going on for extended periods of time. The industrial sector, however, will continue to be exempted. The revised schedule is available to view online and KE expressed determination to solve the electricity crisis.

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This new regime was introduced after the National Economic Council (NEC) announced the decision to close markets country-wide at 8: 30 pm. KE also mentioned on Saturday that after an increase in the global increase of fuel, it has a reduced capacity to provide power. It added that it was working on negotiating flexible timelines for the payments.

The KEG spokesperson mentioned that “in extenuating circumstances, KE may have to ration power supply if supplies of fuel are curtailed.”

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The KE spokesperson informed that that the power demand tends to exceed the supply, especially in the extreme heat and “there is a shortfall of around 350-400MW as on Wednesday.”

Residents of the areas in Karachi protested, chanting slogans and protesting against these unannounced spells of load shedding. There was a peaceful protest and sit-in by those of Federal Capital Area including men, women, young and old.

They complained about the 12 to 14 hours of electricity shortage, despite the bills that they had been paying, which was leading to the shortage of water. Demanding an end to the loadshedding predicament, they participated in talks with the officials of KE as well as those of FC Area Residents Welfare Association. Shopkeepers in the Saddar area also protested by blocking the roads.

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The outrage is not restricted to Karachi – on Wednesday a senate panel in Islamabad also expressed dissatisfaction with this situation. According to the Senate Standing Committee on Cabinet Secretariat, residents of Karachi have had to put up with much strife due to the unannounced loadshedding.

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As the committee chairman Senator Rana Maqbool Ahmed noted, “Officials of K-Electric do not attend the committee meetings nor do they solve the problems of the people of Karachi. Due to the negligence of KE, many people died due to electrocution.”

The committee instructed the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (NEPRA) chairman to examine the complaints against KE officials and Senator Rana Maqbool suggested that Senators Mushtaq Ahmed and Engineer Rukhsana Zubair travel to Karachi to make a report that will be submitted to the standing committee. This will be used to make recommendations to the federal government.

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