KARACHI: A large number of areas in the city were plunged into darkness a few minutes after sunset on Friday as a seemingly “localised minor fault” ended up taking more than half-an-hour to get fixed.

As the city’s south district suffered a nearly complete blackout on a day when power consumption was already on the lower side due to it being a national holiday (Pakistan Day), the K-Electric insisted that the power breakdown had not occurred due to a major fault The neighbourhoods of Garden and Old City areas, Clifton, DHA, Soldier Bazaar, Burns Road, Ranchhore Lines, Lines Area, several localities along the Sharea Faisal and dozens of other residential blocks suffered the most. According to a K-Electric spokesperson, the blackout, which lasted between 15 and 35 minutes, had occurred due to a minor fault in the power system, which originated from Korangi.

“It was a localised minor fault,” he said. “The KE teams worked on the matter as top priority and power was restored within half an hour in most of the areas, with the exception of some spots in Korangi and Garden area,” he added.

Although power supply to the affected areas was restored in less than an hour, Friday’s blackout comes as a grim reminder for Karachiites who suffered major and frequent power breakdowns last year during summer.

Following growing complaints and orders from the Sindh High Court, a team of the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra) visited Karachi and found serious flaws in the “distribution and generation” systems of the K-Electric which had led to prolonged outages in the city. Karachi had witnessed one of the worst power crises in recent history that began on the first day of Ramazan last year, and lasted the next several days.

Published in Dawn, March 24th, 2018

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