Govt fulfills promise as electricity generation: Leghari

F.P. Report

ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Power Division Sardar Awais Ahmed Khan Leghari Sunday said that the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) government had fulfilled the promise, which it had made to the public four and a half years ago, of producing surplus electricity.

The overall electricity generation at present had gone up to 16,477 megawatt, which was about 2700 megawatt more than the demand, he said while addressing a press conference here.

Awais Leghari said that when the PML-N came into power in 2013, the country was producing only 9,279 megawatt electricity against the demand of 11,800 megawatt, facing average shortfall of 2500 megawatt and almost eight to ten hours load-shedding.

He said maximum number of feeders across the country would be turned to zero load-shedding from December 4.

There would be no load-shedding at 5,297 feeders out of total 8,600. Earlier, the number of feeders, where zero load-shedding was being observed, was only 326.

He said total 15 million meter owners would benefit from zero load-shedding and there would be no discrimination among the provinces or urban areas and rural areas on that count. The feeders with below 10 per cent power theft would benefit from the zero load-shedding while other feeders would be subjected to load-shedding in accordance with the rules made to check power theft, he added. The minister said two-hour load-shedding would be observed at feeders with 10-20 per cent power theft and so on.

The feeders with over 80% theft would be subjected to 16 to 20 hours load-shedding, he added.

He said the government wanted to facilitate the people who were showing responsibility and could not treat equally the feeders with less or low power theft with those having huge power theft.

Giving break-up, the minister said earlier there were just 58 feeders on zero load-shedding with LESCO, which would now be enhanced up to 102. Similarly the zero load-shedding feeders in FESCO would increase to 896 from

20, in IESCO to 710 from 72, in MEPCO to 763 from 54, in Peshawar to 309 from 60, in Hyderabad to 204 from 10, in Sukkar to 24 from 18, in KESCO to 61 from 12 and in tribal areas to 29 from zero.

He said with the passage of time other feeders would also be shifted to zero load-shedding in accordance with the policy.

He congratulated the nation on behalf of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz on the achievement of producing more electricity than the demand. Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif had made untiring efforts to achieve the objective, he added.

To a question, he said load-shedding would continue in the areas where there were over 80 per cent power thefts.

To another question, the minister said after completion of ongoing power plants, there would be up to 25,000 megawatt on line capacity so when the peak demand in summer would be easily met.

Awais Leghari said the ministry was focusing to enhance the performance of all the DISCOS and expressed the hope that there would be a revolutionary change in power distribution during next couple of months.

He said legislation was being made to overcome the issues of over-billing. After the passage of that particular law by the Senate, the persons involved in over-billing would be punished in accordance with law.

He said there had also been law to check power theft, however, there were problems in their implementation.  The ministry with provincial governments was taking measure to overcome the issue.

He said currently only 2400 megawatt electricity was being produced through furnace oil run plants and within next two years, the production through the use of the particular fuel would be reduced.

He said on the directives of Council of Common Interests,  the ministry had taken put the information regarding power generation and distribution to the provinces online. The citizens could access the information at the website