PATNA: Besides frequent power outages, low voltage and fluctuations are annoying city residents these days. Electrical equipment, including fans, coolers, tube lights and even CFLs are not functioning to the best of their capacity.
“Low voltage has been a major problem for the last three-four days in almost every part of the city. Fluctuations, too, have been troubling us for the last one week. We usually keep our airconditioners and other electrical appliances off so that they do not conk out,” said Megha, a resident of New Pataliputra Colony.
Suresh Prabhu of Buddha Colony had the same problem. “In this torrid summer, we often prefer spending our evenings and nights out as voltage in our area is not only low but it keeps fluctuating, too,” he said.
Manoj Kumar, a resident of Anandpuri, said, “The problem of severe fluctuation compounded with low voltage is annoying us for the last two weeks. We had even visited the complaint centre at our substation, but nothing has been done till date.”
Scheduled cuts, unscheduled cuts and low voltage problem, the power woes of residents are only increasing, said Manu Malhotra of Ashiana Nagar.
Naushad Hussain of Boring Canal Road complains, “Things were normal till last month. As the summer picked up, the problem of low voltage with fluctuation cropped up. Fans rotate at a low speed and electric bulbs glow like flickering candles during night. Tube lights are a no-show.”
However, South Bihar Power Distribution Company Ltd (SBPDCL) officials are unable to give any satisfactory reason behind the problem. SBPDCL GM Dilip Kumar Singh told TOI, “There has been some problem in the Sipara grid due to which west Patna grids are drawing power from Ara grid which has led to low voltage problem.”
Narrating the details, sources in the operation and maintenance wing of SBPDCL said, on Monday there was a massive fire at Biharsharif super grid in which three transformers of 3X315 MW were completely damaged. Power Grid representatives are now assessing the extent of damage and it may take a week to restore these transformers. As an alternative arrangement, most grids in the city are getting power from Gaya PG and Kusauli PG via Ara. Whenever, power is drawn from these grids, there is a voltage problem.
However, residents say this low voltage and fluctuation is a perennial problem. Severe fluctuations have also taken its toll on electrical equipment like televisions, refrigerators, juicers, mixers and VCDs, said Prabuddha Mishra of Rajiv Nagar.
Rehana of Kadamkuan said, “Children are unable to sleep during night hours owing to improper functioning of electric fans and coolers. Mosquito menace has only added to our woes. These electrical gadgets are not properly operational on account of low voltage.” Sources in SBPDCL also said the problem of low voltage happens due to existing dry and hot weather conditions. Once the rains arrive, the situation will automatically improve as earthings will get adequate moisture.