A number of cities in Punjab and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa faced sudden power failure on Friday morning as a unit of Mangla power plant encountered a technical fault.
According to a spokesman of the Ministry of Power, ‘as per initial reports, at 9:21 am, a wire of 220 KVA line broke down near Muzaffargarh which cut out supplies on Multan-Muzaffargarh circuit. The spokesman added however due to system protection, the system turned into islands out of which south island survived which helped restoring supplies till Faisalabad. “The systems will be completely restored in next 3-4 hours”, the spokesman added.
In the wake of this power failure Multan, Lahore and other cities have been facing prolonged outages.
After this technical fault, reportedly, a number of distribution companies including Lesco, Gepco and others have started power management by shutting down feeders. It is expected that at least four hours are required to fix the fault.
Federal Minister for Water and Electricity Khawaja Asif had admitted at various forums that the load shedding could not be controlled before 2018 in Pakistan. Recently, in a letter written to National Assembly, the minister accepted that the government could not get rid of outages until 2018.
Out of 43 Independent Power Producers (IPP) 14 are not working while 21 projects are producing less than 50 percent electricity.
Asif stated that only 3 power projects are producing 90 percent electricity. It was also mentioned in the letter that the quantum of electricity to be added to the national grid during the government’s tenure is approximately 18,034 Megawatt (MW) while the expected demand at that time would be 25,790 MW.
The figures show that even in 2018, Pakistan will have a short fall of 7,000 MW.