KARACHI: Karachiites had a miserable day on Saturday when most of the city was left with no electricity due to the tripping of a high-tension transmission line a little after noon.
The K-Electric said that its 220kV high-tension circuit was affected by the tripping in National Transmission and Despatch Company’s NKI-Baldia 1 and 2, supplying electricity to Karachi.
The federal ministry of energy confirmed that the supply of electricity to Karachi was affected because of the tripping in Northern-Karachi Interconnections transmission lines Baldia 1 and 2 and the NTDC and the city’s power utility were busy restoring the supply. No causes of the tripping were, however, mentioned by the authorities.
Sources said over 45 grid stations in Karachi were affected by the tripping of transmission lines after which the power supply to a major part of the city was suspended.
They said that the city was facing a shortage of 1,000MW of electricity.
Electricity supply to many localities could not be restored till late evening
While the KE claimed that the restoration efforts were progressing swiftly after the tripping in its high-tension circuit, people from across the city kept on calling the Dawn offices to say that the power supply was not restored to their respective locality till late in the evening.
The power utility said that power supply to PECHS, Defence Housing Authority, Nipa, Civil Lines, North Nazimabad Block S, and other areas had been restored.
Although the major breakdown ensued the tripping of the high-tension transmission line, affecting a large number of localities in the city, reports of outages in several other areas had started pouring in since early morning.
Residents of PECHS Block-6 complained that there had been no electricity in their area since 6:30am, while reports from Saadi Town suggested that there had been no power there since 1am.
Consumers alleged that the power supply was not restored despite several complaints lodged with the power utility. One of them said that he was not even given the complaint number by the KE complaint centre despite repeated complaints.
Similarly, residents from Model Colony, Karimabad and Clifton Block-7 said that they had been without power supply since 7:30am. They said that unannounced loadshedding was being carried out in the exempted areas and they were being told by the power utility that supply was disrupted by localised faults.
Reports from Mehmoodabad said that the power supply was disrupted in the locality at 9.30am and it was not restored till late in the evening. A caller from the vicinity said the power disruption had also led to an acute shortage of water in their area.
People from Lyari, New Karachi, Gulshan-i-Iqbal, Buffer Zone, Shadman Town, Sir Syed Town, Nagin Chowrangi, Surjani Town, FB Area, North Nazimabad, Gulistan-i-Jauhar, Manzoor Colony, PECHS, Korangi, Landhi, Malir, Qayyumabad, Defence, Jamshed Road, Saddar, Burnes Road, Orangi Town, Baldia Town and Nazimabad also said that their areas also suffered a power breakdown.
After the major breakdown, the KE said that restoration efforts had already been begun and were expected to be completed within an hour. It said that all affected grids had been restored and downstream energising was under way and power to all strategic sites had been restored on priority.
The power utility claimed that its transmission system was intact and restoration was progressing swiftly. However, the power supply to several localities was not restored till late in the evening.
The last massive power breakdown took place a little before midnight on Jan 10, plunging the entire country into darkness.
Published in Dawn, May 23rd, 2021