gfiles magazine

August 14, 2012

A nation short-circuited

power sector political will
A nation short-circuited
Generation, distribution and transmission failure... problems, problems and no solutions. The crux of the crisis is shortage of fuel. What are the options? Are we going to see light at the end of the day?  
by Neeraj Mahajan
“No nation can aspire to be modern and developed without electricity...No modern machinery can run without uninterrupted and quality power... Imagine New York or London or Tokyo for just one day without power supply… It could bring down governments”.
– Former President Dr APJ Abdul Kalam
It’s impossible to imagine a world without electricity. Don’t be shocked electricity is ‘power’. Either you have it or you don’t. It create three categories of people… powerful (with all the power they want), power scarce or power-scant (cables and poles in place but irregular power) and powerless (no power and no hopes either). Electricity bridges the gap between the rich and the poor and alleviates poverty; while lack of electricity can magnify the effects of death, disease and poverty. Because of lack of clean and reliable energy, 800 million people in India use fuel-wood, agricultural waste and cow dung. According to the World Health Organisation, this is the main cause of indoor air pollution and accounts for 300,000 -400,000 deaths and other chronic health issues every year in India.
Today, there are more people without electricity in India than in any part of the world, and nowhere more so than in UP with 60 million powerless people. At least 10 out of 28 states in India have 25 per cent power deficit. Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh are amongst the worst with 23 per cent and 22 per cent deficit, respectively. The states most affected by power shortage include Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Orissa, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra.....READMORE

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