The citizens of Karachi faced a massive electrical breakdown in the city yesterday, leading to misery as temperatures also peaked on Thursday. Most areas of the city saw a blackout of up to eight hours.
Thousands of people took to the streets protesting against K-Electric’s power cuts. It’s obviously not easy living in 40 degrees Celsius with an extended water crisis and no power for most part of the working hours.
Together, all these factors tested the patience of Karachi’s residents.
According to K-Electric’s (K-E) spokesperson, the current cycle of increased ‘loadshedding’ was due to a malfunction in a unit of Bin Qasim power plant which tripped yesterday. This resulted in a shortfall of 250 megawatts.
He added that a low amount of gas was being supplied to the plants which has worsened the issue.
Areas affected by the power breakdown at Port Qasim were Mehmoodabad, Malir, , Gulshan e Iqbal, Korangi, Lyari, Federal B Area Landhi, Saddar and Keamari.
K-E Communications Director Sadia Dada says that repair work is underway and that the company is dealing with the shortfall by initiating a rotational cycle of electricity loadshedding. She added that “the situation will be improved as soon as possible.”
Sui Gas Refutes Blame
Sui Southern Gas Company’s (SSGC) spokesperson, Safdar Khunharo, straight out denied K-Electric’s claim that SSGC wasn’t supplying enough gas. He said that despite low pressure, they have been providing K-Electric its complete designated quota of 160 million cubic feet per day.
A medical store owner at Bizerta Lines had this to say:
We have been disturbed due to load-shedding lasting for up to nine hours in our areas. There is unannounced loadshedding and the power utility company has deprived us of the basic facility of uninterrupted supply of electricity. The situation has worsened so much that people have to rely on their generators, which often leads to scuffles among neighbors.
Another citizen, who was a victim of 12 hours of loadshedding, said that children and women have had to suffer due to K-Electric. He wanted K-E to either improve their management and operations or just hand over the company back to the government. Residents claim that ‘system breakdowns’ have become a routine excuse for the electricity supply company during the summer season.
As the summer heat grows, even areas which were exempt from loadshedding are now witnessing four to six hours of life without electricity.