Load-shedding crisis averted, for now

SHILLONG, April 14: Power Minister James Sangma on Tuesday informed that the department has been able to resolve yet another imminent load-shedding crisis by addressing the power regulation notice issued by the Power Grid Corporation of India Limited (PGCIL).
The PGCIL had threatened to regulate 50 MW of power from the Inter-State Transmission System (ISTS) from midnight of April 14 if the outstanding bill of Rs 56.89 crore was not cleared by April 8.
“Despite the shortcomings and the COVID crisis, we have been able to lift the regulations put in place by PGCIL. The Power department is always vigilant and alert in terms of trying to address such kind of crisis,” a beaming Sangma said today.
Regretting that such issues have been cropping up from time to time, Sangma said the problems exist due to the “legacy issues” and outstanding dues which have accumulated to a large sum over the years.
“Unfortunately for us it is a case of bad timing because we are facing so many challenges because of COVID. But we are working tirelessly to ensure that children appearing for their exams are not disturbed. We have had regulations in the past but we have been able to resolve them within 48 to 72 hours,” he asserted.
He was quick to acknowledge the efforts of employees of the Power department, the CMD of MeECL and the chief minister in overcoming the crisis despite the “legacy problems”.
James backs MeECL CMD: Extending his full support to MeECL CMD Arunkumar Kembhavi, the Power minister said, “The CMD is trying his level best to clean the system and that is why he conducted the surprise checks and unearthed power theft. So some elements are demanding his removal.”
The minister made it clear that the government was doing its best to bring a turnaround in the MeECL affairs and predicted that more officials involved in malpractices would offer resistance to the efforts being made to not only provide uninterrupted power but also improve the overall functioning of the MeECL.
Making it clear that malpractices would no longer be tolerated, he said, “We have now started seeing skeletons coming out of the closet and hence the resistance. There are many officers who are engaged in malpractice. So it is not surprising that they have been demanding removal of the CMD.
Stating that reforms are always met with resistance, Sangma said, “It is a stage where there is a transition and there is lot of disruption and that is why there is a lot of opposition and resistance to it. This is because a lot of people are comfortable with the way things are going on right now.”

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