By Tanaya Singh:
While the Delhi Metro commuters were wearily talking about yesterday’s power failure, and discussing the blackout continued for six hours, beginning at 2:35A.M on Monday, the trains suddenly came to a standstill, and remained that way for long. Second time in two days, the Northern power grid failed yet again.
But this time, it’s not just the north. After the collapse of the northern power grid at around 1:00 P.M., the eastern grid followed, engulfing around 17 states into a deadlock today. On both the days, all transport services suffered the most, creating havoc for the daily passengers, with metros and trains between many important stations, either stranded or delayed. The trains marooned inside tunnels had to be taken to the nearest stations to be evacuated, and commuters found themselves far from home, or stuck at their own stations.
States affected by today’s failure included West Bengal, Jharkhand, Bihar, Odisha, Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana, Uttarakhand, Rajasthan and the North-Eastern States. Power minister Sushil Kumar Shinde said the failure was due to over drawl of power by some states.
While many important facilities such as hospitals and airports used diesel run backups, life in the blackout was risky with traffic going haywire due to broken down signals. A holiday was declared in West Bengal by Mamata Banerjee, and all major factories in the entire candle lit belt had to shut down till power was restored; the most grievous, being the stagnation of six major water treatment plants in Delhi.
While the Delhi government is busy accusing UP, Punjab and Haryana for using more power than allotted to them, and BJP is busy cursing the government for the biggest power failure of the decade, the main question, easily visible from the huge wide loophole(of illegal power usage and mismanagement), is about the backup? This is the time when the country should realise the importance and the compulsion of power backups. Without these, not only the economy suffers due to discontinuity of the industrial and IT industries, but the life of citizens is also endangered.
No country should leave its citizens stranded into complete darkness for hours.