The PML-N government must not lose sight of the fact that it won the election last month because the voters thought it would be better than its predecessor at dealing with the loadshedding crisis. Prime Minister Mian Nawaz Sharif’s reluctance to give a date for the end of power loadshedding can be understood, but he and his party should remember that the public’s patience is limited, especially with people dying in the heat, with three deaths on Monday in Narang Mandi showing this. Mian Nawaz should remember that if these deaths occur during the 12 to 18 hours of loadshedding carried out in urban areas, his partymen will have a hard time explaining why their party should not be blamed. There is not enough time left for the Prime Minister to sit around chairing meetings painting a rosy view of the future, as he did on Tuesday in Islamabad, chairing a review meeting on energy policy.The policy itself will be announced by Mian Nawaz himself in a couple of weeks. It seems unconscionable, albeit a trifle conservative. It also relies on efficiency and merit in a sector where they have hitherto been absent. Apart from ending loadshedding, which the policy envisages by increasing generation capacity to 26,800 MW from the present 12,200 MW in the medium term (three to five year, or before the next election), it also wants the price of electricity brought down, which is to be done by introducing hydel, nuclear, coal-based and gas-based power plants, so as to create a cheaper energy mix, which would allow the 30 percent reduction in rates envisaged in the policy. The aims are ambitious, but if local industry can once again get what it had before, which was a guaranteed source of cheap power, not only would it be able to increase exports, it would create jobs, and thus spearhead the ‘economic explosion’ promised by Mian Nawaz during the recent election campaign.One of the key areas where the government will have to put its foot down will be on power, because not only does it represent an extension of the culture of privilege, but because it is engaged in by members of the ruling party. It will have to make absolutely clear that it can no longer afford to protect power thieves because that could lead to the failure of the energy policy to deliver. It should not need people to die of the heat to convince the government, but the latest deaths should serve as a warning that people will not spare any negligence. The government should implement the energy policy sooner rather than later, and should not delay work on something it should handle on a war footing.