KARACHI- Acting President of the Karachi Chamber of Commerce & Industry (KCCI), Muffasar Atta Malik, while expressing deep concern over prolong power outage being suffered by Karachi since Friday morning, held K-Electric responsible for the power crisis as the utility service provider kept the available furnace oil based thermal power plants suspended even in such emergency situations.
In a statement issued here on Saturday, Acting President KCCI, Muffasar Atta Malik pointed out that it has been more than 24 hours since the first drop of drizzle struck the ground but power supply to the city still remains instable at large.
Acting President KCCI said that although power supply to K-Electric was curtailed by 650 megawatts on Friday morning due to tripping of Jamshoro Grid but K-Electric is capable of producing additional 1200 megawatts of electricity through its existing furnace oil fired thermal power plants. Unfortunately, K-Electric continues to keep these thermal plants shut in order to cut expenditures on furnace oil which aggravated the problems for the public.
At least, K-Electric should consider reactivating these plants in such emergency situations so that the hardships being faced by the masses could be minimized, he suggested and urged the government to take notice of the situation by ordering K-Electric to activate furnace oil based thermal plants in such conditions.
Acting President Muffasar Atta Malik further noted that power outage disrupted the lives of people on the Jummatul Widah (special last Friday prayers) of Ramadan and the electricity failure resulted in acute water shortage in every household.
He said that that the business and industrial community have suffered grave losses due to abrupt power failure in all industrial zones and commercial centers of the city, which requires immediate attention as the industrialists fear that the situation is likely to worsen further and their industrial units may remain deprived of power supply for many days in case Karachi city undergoes heavy rainfall.
The businessmen and industrialists suffer losses to the tune of around Rs4 to Rs5 billion a day due to such power failures which completely suspend all industrial activities and give rise to the production losses, Acting President KCCI added.
He mentioned that although K-Electric has been claiming that its technical teams have energized all its 62 grid stations and electricity was restored in majority of city areas but the ground reality is totally contrary to these claims as after resumption of power supply to numerous areas of the city on late Friday evening for hardly a couple of hour, most of these localities were once again plunged into darkness and the power supply has not been normalized yet.
Acting President KCCI, while urging K-Electric to quickly restore power supply across the city, also advised the utility service provider to utilize and operate furnace oil thermal plants in such emergency situation.
He also requested Prime Minister Mian Muhammad Nawaz Sharif, Governor Sindh Dr. Ishrat ul Ebad Khan, Chief Minister Sindh Syed Qaim Ali Shah and other concerned ministers at Federal and Provincial levels to review the situation and issue strict directives to K-Electric to make special arrangements for effectively and timely dealing with such incidents on war footing basis in future, besides making substantial investments on improving the obsolete infrastructure.