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Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Gujarat: Banaskantha farmers protest ‘erratic power supply’

On Saturday, the Bhartiya Kisan Sangh (BKS) submitted a memorandum to the Executive Engineer of GETCO in Deodhar, Banaskantha seeking an "immediate correction" in the "constant tripping, unplanned load shedding and unscheduled electric supply" that has been causing much difficulty to farmers in the district.

By: Express News Service | Vadodara |
October 23, 2021 10:02:03 pm
However, Managing Director of Madhya Gujarat Vij Corporation Limited (MGVCL) in Vadodara said that there was "no power cut situation in the state" as ample electricity was available due to the efforts of the state government to procure power and rectify the shortage arisen due to the festive season coinciding with the escalation of prices for coal import and also due to the monsoon. (File)

Farmers in Deodhar in Banaskantha on Saturday took out a protest to the office of the Gujarat Energy Transmission Corporation Limited (GETCO) against the “erratic power supply” for over three weeks. However, Managing Director of Madhya Gujarat Vij Corporation Limited (MGVCL) in Vadodara said that there was “no power cut situation in the state” as ample electricity was available due to the efforts of the state government to procure power and rectify the shortage arisen due to the festive season coinciding with the escalation of prices for coal import and also due to the monsoon.

On Saturday, the Bhartiya Kisan Sangh (BKS) submitted a memorandum to the Executive Engineer of GETCO in Deodhar, Banaskantha seeking an “immediate correction” in the “constant tripping, unplanned load shedding and unscheduled electric supply” that has been causing much difficulty to farmers in the district.

The memorandum states, “In recent days, the three-phase power connections for agriculture have been witnessing erratic and excessive power cuts… since there is no schedule for the load shedding or planned closure, the farmers have to stay awake through the night to complete their farm activities… it is a matter of grave concern as irrigation in fields is totally dependent on electricity…”

BKS member and farmer from Deodhar, Pravin Patel, told The Sunday Express that the farmers had been facing excessive power cuts since the beginning of October.
Patel said, “It has never happened before but now, for the last 20-25 days, for every one hour of power supply, there is a three to four-hour power cut… if there is a shortage of electricity, the transmission company should fix a schedule for power cuts so that we can plan our farming activity around the same.”

Meanwhile, in a media interaction in Vadodara Saturday, MGVCL MD Tushar Bhatt said that the state has adequate power supply and a plan have been put in place to manage the recent intermittent shortage of coal by the state-owned power distribution companies.

Bhatt said, “To meet the power demand of all the consumers in the state, a plan is in place. There will be no such situation where the state will witness power cuts. People should know that there is no shortage of coal in the state for power generation in coal-based power plants. We are purchasing power from Tata and other private utilities… The reason for the shortage was due to increase in power consumption due to festivals and shortage of coal due to monsoon and slow imports…”

Bhatt added that five power generation plants of Gujarat State Electricity Corporation Limited (GSECL) have begun generating power and ten will commence soon.

“The GSECL production will start in a day or two and the situation will normalise. All measures have been taken by the state government and its power companies to deal with the situation on a temporary basis and steps have been taken to reactivate the power units affected due to technical reasons to their full potential… We have procured power from various power stations located in the state as well as outside the state to meet the power demand of the state,” Bhatt said.

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