A KESC officer told Daily Times that the situation at Bin Qasim Thermal Power Station (BQTPS) has not improved, as three units are still not functional. It seems that KESC does not intend to operate them until the government settles the issue of subsidy and settlement of outstanding dues from major defaulters such as the City District Government Karachi (CDGK) and Karachi Water and Sewerage Board (KWSB), said the officer.
The officer further said that it is a violation of the understanding between the stakeholders on the KESCs part, as the latter had agreed in principle with defaulters that payments will be settled on a department-wise basis and the consumers would not be allowed to suffer.
KESC had suspended the electricity connections to KWSB for non-payment of outstanding dues, while the CDGK, in retaliation to KESCs move against the KWSB, banned KESC from digging roads for repair or maintenance work. It is worth mentioning here that KESC owes money to the Pakistan Electric Power Company (PEPCO) but, to date, PEPCO has not denied the daily power supply of 500-700 megawatts.
Meanwhile, the Karachi Nuclear Power Plant (KANUPP) has tripped due to flaws in KESCs high-tension cables and, despite claims, no repair or maintenance work has been carried out since November 2008. The lack of repair and maintenance work will add to the publics miseries once summer is here. The line losses will increase and tripping will be more rampant, so expect the power outages to be worse this summer, warned the officer.
Citizens from all over Karachi complained that they were having sleepless nights thanks to load shedding, while their days were no better, as the power was out mostly, hampering everyday chores. With the increase in the prices of fuel (petrol and diesel), its not easy to run generators and this adds on to our financial worries.
In summers, customers avoid visiting markets, as due to frequent load shedding, it is unbearably hot. This in turn effects our business, said a shopkeeper at a local market.