QUETTA: Farmers and other people protesting against long durations of loadshedding blocked different highways in Balochistan on Thursday.
Hundreds of protesters gathered on highways in Khuzdar, Kalat, Hub, Kolpur, Lakpas, Loralai, Kuchlak, Pishin and Yaru areas and put obstacles there, causing traffic jams for hours.
The protests were organised on the call of Zamindar Action Committee after a deadline given to the Quetta Electricity Supply Company to reduce the duration of loadshedding ended.
The protesters announced that they would continue to block highways until the duration of loadshedding was reduced. Hundreds of buses and trucks carrying goods for different cities of Balochistan and Afghan transit trade were stranded at different places due to blocking of roads at about 20 places.
According to officials, Afghan transit trade and Nato supplies for US troops in Afghanistan were also suspended.
Abdul Rehman Bazai, secretary general of the Zamindar Action Committee, said that farmers in many areas of the province were facing 22-hour-long loadshedding in a day. The farmers are not able to get water from tube wells at a time when standing wheat and other crops need more water, he added.
Abdul Wahid Shahwani in Khuzdar, Ali Jan Mangi in Dera Murad and Behram Baloch in Gwadar contributed to this report
Published in Dawn, April 2nd, 2021