KP CM storms into grid station, forcefully restores power to DI Khan


Gandapur warns of strict action if power outage at any grid station exceeds 12 hours. Accuses federal govt of neglecting its responsibilities towards public issues. Protesting mobs attacked over 20 power distribution installations across the province during Eid days n Power minister seeks interior ministry’s help for security of grid stations in KP. Mohsin Naqvi holds phone talk with KP CM to address loadshedding crisis.

PESHAWAR/ISLAMABAD   -   In a surprise move, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Ali Amin Gandapur, enraged over the prolonged power loadshedding in the province, yesterday stormed into a grid station in Dera Ismael Khan where he personally restored electricity, announcing an end to any loadshedding that exceeded 12 hours a day.

The chief minister was accompanied by Dera DPO Nasir Mahmood and DSP Adnan, as he visted DI Khan to resolve the ongoing issue of prolonged load shedding. The visit came amid a dispute between the federal and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa governments over electricity load shedding. The residents of the province are currently 18-hour load shedding a day.

A statement posted on the KP government’s X account said no area would suffer power outages for more than 12 hours now. The chief minister also directed all lawmakers to visit grid stations in their respective areas and ensure the implementation of the 12-hour loadshedding schedule.

On the occasion, Gandapur accused the federal government of stealing the mandate and neglecting its responsibilities, particularly in addressing the province’s electricity and financial issues.

He said that PTI is governing Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and despite repeated attempts, including a phone call after the deadline, the federal minister did not respond to the province’s urgent requests on the issue of unannounced load shedding the province.

The chief minister accused WAPDA of mistreating Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and urged residents of Dera Ismail Khan (DI Khan) to avoid damaging WAPDA’s assets.

He insisted that load shedding should not exceed 12 hours on any feeder and stressed that ending load shedding issue was the federal government’s responsibility.

Gandapur mentioned that he had informed Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, stressing the need for provincial funds.

The CM warned that if the national grid reduces electricity to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, he would take drastic measures, including stopping the electricity supply from the province.

He expressed frustration over the federal government’s alleged failure to fulfil its duties and called for the support of the people of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in addressing these challenges.

Meanwhile PTI MPA Fazal Elahi Rehman also visited the Rahman Baba Grid Station twice and restored electricity to 10 feeders forcibly.

According to PESCO officials, after bringing the feeders to life, Fazal Elahi left, and electricity was cut off again in the morning, but he returned and restored electricity to four more feeders.

According to PESCO officials, in the high-load areas of Fazal Elahi’s constituency, load shedding is underway for 16 hours, but where there is no load shedding, load shedding is not being done.

According to PESCO officials, Fazal Elahi’s work to reduce load shedding on feeders is ongoing, and legal action is being taken against MPA Fazal Elahi for forcing the feeder to operate.

The Pesco had reportedly lodged an application with local police, who then registered an FIR over the storming of the gridstation but did not included the name of MPA Fazal Elahi.

Meanwhile, the Federal Minister for Power Division sought the help of Ministry of Interior for provision of security to the grid stations in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, following 20 mob attacks during the past two days, headed by the PTI parliamentarians/elected representative, and the reluctance of the provincial police to take action against the attackers.

“It is requested that the law enforcement agencies, both federal and provincial, may be directed to provide strict and meaningful security at all the grid stations in the province and stop entry of unconcerned persons inside these grid stations,” said the Federal Minister for Power Division Awais Leghari said in a letter written to the Federal Minister for Interior Mohsin Naqvi.

“Moreover, cases may be registered against all the persons who have been nominated by the PESCO authorities for forcefully entering the grid stations and illegally opening power supply,” said the letter seen by The Nation.

The request was made by the Minister for Power Division to the Minister of Interior after 20 grid stations were attacked by PTI MNA, MPAs, and other elected representatives along with mobs in various areas of Peshawar Electric Supply Company (PESCO) region during the second and third days of Eid.

“I want to draw your kind attention to the incidents in parts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa wherein responsible public figures have been leading rowdy protesters inside the premises of grid stations in Peshawar, Mardan, Nowshehra, Charsadda, Tank and Bannu on pretext of power outage,” said the letter.

Earlier, Chief Executive Officer PESCO, in a letter to the Federal Government said that as a general & specially during Eid holidays, Fazle Elahi MPA & Arbab Aamer Ayub MNA along with a mob attacked on 132KV Grid Station Rehman Baba & 132KV Grid Station Kohat Road on the following events and forcefully / unlawfully restored the supply of 11KV High loss feeders with large quantum of receivables beyond the scheduled load management hours. The action on part of MNA & MPA caused heavy financial loss to PESCO. It is added that MPA and his team stayed for a long time at the Grid Station to refrain the GSO staff from switching off the high loss feeders.

Similarly, on the same day Zulfiqar MNA along with a mob forcefully energized 11KV Feeders at 132KV Grid Station Taru Jaba & 132KV Grid Station Pabbi, repeated the same actions as narrated above besides chanting slogans & instigating the mob to strictly watch the status of feeders & harassing the staff on duty not to open the feeders otherwise threatening for dire consequences, that can be visibly watched in the videos on social media

Similar action was done by Wasim & Arshad Nazim Glozai by forcefully energizing the feeders at 132KV Grid Station Dalazak besides blockade of Motorway.

Besides above, Inam Mayor Mathra forcefully entered the 132KV Grid Station Warsak unlawfully energized all the high loss feeders during Eid days. He also shifted high loss areas on good paying feeders illegally.

It is not just the Eid Holidays that the elected representatives along with the mob entered the Grid Stations & acted unlawfully by switching on the high loss feeders but they have made it a routine matter & supply of electricity being a hot topic in the summer season.

“These incidents are not only encouraging people / mob to forcefully enter the Grid Stations & switch on the feeders causing high financial loss to PESCO /state but also creating frightening and threating situation for PESCO officers / officials’ staff to run the system smoothly,”.

Furthermore, the switching operation of 11KV switchgears by untrained / irrelevant people may cause blasting of equipment and all the Grid Stations are at high risk.

In a relevant development, Interior Minister Mohsin Naqvi and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Ali Amin Gandapur held a telephonic discussion to address the loadshedding crisis in the province.

The chief minister apprised the interior minister regarding his concerns. Both leaders agreed to hold consultations and negotiations on the issue of 12 hours loadshedding in KP during the next two days.

The development comes hours after reports emerged that Gandapur got restored the power supply following entering a grid station in Dera Ismail Khan, his home town, and issued his own loadshedding schedule limited to 12 hours per day.

During their talk, both sides also agreed to clear misunderstandings through mutual understanding and discussion. CM KP assured the minister regarding the safety and security of grid stations.

Naqvi told Gandapur that all possible efforts would be made to resolve the loadshedding issue in KP as soon as possible. He added that the security of all federal installations was their responsibility.

ePaper - Nawaiwaqt