MULTAN-The government has made heavy investment in the power generation projects which will surely result in ending loadshedding by the mid of 2018.

Multan Electric Power Company (Mepco) CEO Engr Masood Salah Uddin stated while talking to a group of journalists here at Mepco headquarters on Tuesday. He said that the Board of Directors of the company had approved a project worth Rs13 billion to upgrade Mepco infrastructure which would enable the company to distribute whatever quantity of electricity given to it. He said that the loadshedding is being carried out in Mepco region according to the schedule given by the government. “We have 1,165 feeders out of which there are only 35 to 40 feeders where duration of loadshedding is more than three or four hours. It is because these are high-losses feeders,” he pointed out. He claimed that the Mepco is striving hard to bring the ratio of line losses down in these feeders.

He declared he has zero tolerance policy for power theft and corruption. “I have fired many workers including an executive engineer during last few days on corruption charges. Action is also underway against many others,” he revealed. He declared that the Mepco workers unearthing power theft would be given full protection.

He disclosed that the company detected theft of two lac units during last four months and sent 1102 requests to police for registration of cases but just 65 FIRs were registered. He said that generation of just one unit of electricity cost the country hundreds of thousands of rupees and thus curbing power theft is very important for national economy. Answering a question, he said that electricity meter is the cashbox of the company and all out measures were adopted to protect it from tempering or harm. “Only those meters go out of order which face tempering attempts either from consumer or our staffer,” he added.

The Mepco Chief further disclosed that the company is going to constitute a safety committee of the BoD which would look after safety issues. “We are going to automate the mechanism of Permit to Work (PTW). It will ensure the safety of our workers,” he added. He said that the company had already given safety kit to its workers.

He said that the Mepco was the largest power distribution company of the country with nine operation circles, 37 Divisions, 170 sub divisions and 127 grid stations. “As many as 13 districts come into our jurisdiction with 50 constituencies of National Assembly and 104 provincial assembly,” he added. He disclosed that the company had 5.48 million consumers out of which 4.8 million were domestic, 500952 commercial, 53260 industrial and 78821 agricultural. “Except for China, which has power distribution companies with the number of consumer higher than ours, no other power distribution company in the world has more consumers than us,” he noted. He said that the company generated revenue worth about Rs. 150 billion a year, adding that the performance of the company improved considerably while line losses went down.

To a query, he said that 31 feeders of Multan faced severe tripping in summers due to overload. He stressed upon such consumers, who are utilising more than their sanctioned load, to get their loads sanctioned before coming summers so that the overloaded transformers could be replaced. He said that the crash maintenance of Mepco infrastructure would be carried out in this winter.