By Balaach Qadir and Badil Baloch
The load shedding duration in Gwadar has gone up to 16 hours due to which the residents are forced to protest on roads. The residents of Pasni, a Tehsil of Gwadar District, have blocked the main road as a protest against the same condition.
Speaking about the permanent solution of the load shedding problem in Gwadar, WAPDA’s Hasan Magsi said,”Unless the federal government provides electricity to Gwadar directly from Iran, the electricity crisis is likely to persist.”
There have been reports of supply of low voltage in the area because of which the electronics are getting burned. A shopkeeper Hamal Baloch, while talking to Pak Voices said: “This is the season of ACs and Fridges but due to the supply of low voltage, the circuits of these electronic appliances are not working for some customers.”
One more reason of load shedding in Gwadar is attributed to the fact that when the transformer of an area is out of order, WAPDA takes many weeks to repair it. In view of this condition, people are forced to save their money and repair the transformer themselves. Gul Khatoon, a resident of Pasni said: “ it has been one month since the transformer had been out of order but WAPDA has done nothing to repair it.”
One resident while talking to Pak Voices anonymously added, “Whenever we call Executive Engineer (XEN) of WAPDA or any other concerned authorities for some action on such issues, they do not answer our concerns.”
Jalil Baloch, another resident of Gwadar added, “The people in Makran area of Gwadar pay the most bills however they are also deprived of electricity in their areas.”
In view of this condition, when the XEN of WAPDA Hasan Magsi was contacted, he affirmed that electricity is a big problem in the area which is getting extreme with time. He added, “WAPDA lacks staff and supplies due to which we cannot control this issue on time.”
According to Hasan Magsi, “Electricity is being supplied to Makran through Iran whereas Gwadar is the last grid station in the area. The central supply line goes through Panjgur, Turbat and Pasni due to which the supply of the electricity gets lesser and lesser till it reaches Gwadar.”
According to the government, Gwadar region needs 150 megawatts of electricity collectively whereas it is currently supplied with 95 megawatts which is very less for the region.
On the other hand, the Division Chairman Tariq Baloch while giving an interview to Pak Voices said, “ the electricity wires are very old, worn out and gets tripped due to increased load and moisture which in turn has increased load shedding.”