CESC warm-up for Durga Puja, to power 3,072 pandals

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Kolkata, Oct 03 (UNI) The Calcutta Electric Supply Corporation (CESC) will provide temporary power connections to 3,072 Puja pandals, the highest ever in the history of the company.

Informing this to newspersons here today, CESC Executive Director D K Sen said the firm had processed more than 3,000 applications in this regard, adding that the total number of connections in the previous year was 3,040.

''The count is increasing every year and the figure for 2006 during the festival was assesed at 2,885,'' Mr Sen informed.

He estimated that altogether 30 lakh units would be consumed by the pandals during the festivities.

Moreover, four 500 KVA generators, powered by diesel, would be placed at strategic locations - Howrah, Central, South and North Kolkata - which would be pressed into action for sustaining power demand during breakdowns.

''All the CESC generating stations are in operation. Apart from the usual West Bengal State Electricity and Distribution and Co Ltd supply, arrangements have been made for some special imports to the tune of 100 MW from outside the state,'' he added.

CESC Executive Director Santanu Chatterjee said while 5,000 personnel would be deployed during the festival, 162 mobile vans armed with radio connectivity would patrol the city.

Work at control rooms and command stations would take place day and night, while strict vigil would be conducted in the Puja pandals to spot power pilferage, Mr Chatterjee added.

''The persons found guilty of this crime would incur imprisonment of five years, along with a fine of Rs 50,000,'' he warned.

Meanwhile, CESC had succesfully bridged the peak demand of 1,450 MW on October 1, the highest ever in its history, Mr Chatterjee said, adding that the figure stood at 1,436 MW during October last year.

The executive director projected that the peak power demand would hover around 1,460 MW during the days of Durga Puja.

They also urged the organisers to hire electricians to avail their services round the clock.

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