LAHORE The DG Pakistan Electric Supply Company (PEPCO) on Monday claimed that taking notice of power situation in Lahore, the Prime Minister had telephoned (from London) the Minister for Water and Power and directed him to reduce loadshedding duration in the provincial capital. The Prime Minister had directed the Minister for Water and Power by phone from London to reduce load shedding in Lahore, PEPCO DG (Energy Management and Conservation) Engineer Muhammad Khalid told reporters while addressing a press conference here at WAPDA House on Monday. Ironically, despite the PMs special instructions, the Lahore Electric Supply Company (LESCO) is continuing 14 to 18 hour power outages in the provincial metropolis, forcing the public to take to streets and stage anti-government protests. However, the DG further said that the PEPCO has decided to enhance the load shedding of steel furnaces further from April 12 to April 15 in order to save 450-MW electricity so that the loadshedding-hit masses could be provided a little relief. Muhammad Khalid said that the saved electricity was being distributed in respective cities to reduce power load-shedding duration there. He claimed that LESCO was saving 240MW, which has helped in reducing loadshedding duration from 11 to 9 hours in Lahore. While GEPCO is saving 180MW and giving relief in loadshedding to Gujranwala, he added. To a question, the DG hoped that power generation would improve after April 15, as KEPCO (Kot Addu) under-maintenance units No. 13 to 15 of total 344MW capacity would back in the system by 14th, Guddu Power Plant's unit No. 6, 9 and 10 of 300MW by April 15 while 300MW unit of Hubco would restart generation by 20th and 180MW unit of Muzaffargarh Power Plant by 25th of the month. Engr. Khalid said that Guddu Power's two units of 300MW and two other units No 1 of 150MW and 4 of 75MW had already been brought back to the national grid. To a question, the DG said that PEPCO had fixed February, March, October and November for power units annual maintenance. The PEPCO does not pay 'capacity charges' as penalty to the power plants, which surpassed the maintenance deadline, he added. Responding to another question regarding inflated-billing despite massive load shedding, he said that both the domestic and commercial electricity consumers should contact the complaint cells established under the control of the distribution companies for the rectification of their inflated bills.