Punjab facing power shortage, cuts to continue

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Patiala, Jul 9 (UNI) Despite a good monsoon season, there is expected to be no respite from power cuts in Punjab as the state is not been getting its due share from central power projects.

The Punjab State Electricity Board (PSEB) has been forced to impose daily six hour power cuts in urban and 15 hour unscheduled power cuts in rural areas.

Due to sudden outages in generation plants in the state and short supply from central pool, the power frequency has fallen below 49Hz.

One of the units of NTPC's Singrouli Power Plant (500 MW) is out of generation since June 23, It will start working from July 18.

Another unit of 200MW of this plant is also out due to boiler tube leakage and it would be revived on July 11. PSEB is losing 70 MW, that is 17 Lakh Units (LUs) per day from this plant.

One unit of Guru Gobind Singh Thermal Plant (GSSTP), Ropar which was out of generation since June 15 due to fire in the cable gallery. The PSEB is losing 50 LUs per day due to non generation of this unit.

Another problem that the Board is facing is that wet coal is being received, due to widespread rains in pit head areas of coal mines. This is causing frequent choking in the coal path to the boiler bunkers and is affecting generation to some extent in the thermal plants in the state.

The Bhakra Beas Management Board (BBMB) has drastically reduced releases of water from Pong reservoir to 1000 cusecs only, depriving PSEB of the additional generation at Mukerian Hydel project. However irrigation authorities have been requested to increase the releases to the Mukerian project.

PSEB Chairman Y S Ratra today admitted that the Board had been facing power shortage and said that GGSTP at Ropar had been lighted up and is likely to be synchronised tonight. The Board will get 210 MW or 50 LUs per day from this unit.

Mr Ratra further informed that demand of power on July eight was 1740 LUs, but availability was 1501 LUs. This includes 749 LUs from own sources including BBMB, 375 LUs from Central Sector, 199 LUs through purchase and 178 LUs through Banking.

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