New Delhi: The Jammu & Kashmir administration has sought help from the Indian Army to restore the electricity supply following a strike by the electricity department personnel in the Jammu division.
Divisional Commissioner of Jammu Raghav Langer wrote to the Indian Army seeking assistance for the restoration of electricity supply following a strike by the electricity department personnel.
“It is to bring to your kind notice that due to strike by Electricity Department personnel in the UT of Jammu and Kashmir, essential services have been severely affected in the Jammu Region. We would like to hereby requisition the Indian Army to assist in the restoration of said essential services by provisioning manpower to man critical electricity stations and water supply sources,” read the official communique by Langer today.
Reacting to this, the former J&K chief minister said there is no bigger admission of failure for a civilian administration than to call upon the army and it means a total breakdown of governance has been accepted by the J&K government.
The army acted swiftly and deployed its troops at main critical electricity stations and water supply sources to restore supply.
Several areas of the Union Territory witnessed electricity outages as linemen to senior engineers begin their indefinite strike on Saturday against the government’s decision to privatize.
During the night-hours, there was a blackout in nearly 50 per cent of areas across J&K.
This comes after the Centre, on December 16, proposed to delicense electricity distribution to reduce entry barriers in the power sector enabling multiple distribution companies to operate in the same area of supply.
“The distribution companies across the country are monopolies, either government or private. There is a need to provide choice to consumers by promoting competition. A framework will be put in place to give consumers alternatives to choose from among more than one Distribution Company,” the Centre had said in the Union Budget 2021-22.
Speaking on the strike, Shiv Anant Tayal, MD, Jammu Power Distribution Corp said that a mandate in power sector reforms says that all states will have different power generation transmission distribution companies, so internal accounting of salaries is done differently. He, however, assured timely salaries.
“Their demand of unbundling, i.e. to implement the previous system, is not possible as these power sector reforms are implemented all over India. Our intention is to open up the power stations in a phase-wise manner on priority,” he added.