STATE TIMES NEWS SRINAGAR: The Government on Wednesday ordered the devolution of electrification, system strengthening, loss reductions works in Power Development Department (PDD) to the Panchayati Raj Institutions (PRIs). According to the order issued by PDD, the Government has directed the devolution in exercise of powers conferred under sub-section 4 of section 12 of the Panchayati Raj Act, 1989 (amended up to October 2018). The order says that Panchayats shall identify left out houses, if any/new constructions for electrification, which shall also include public installations like schools, Panchayats, hospitals, religious places etc., and report the same to the concerned Sub Divisional Officer of JKPDD for electrification. Under vision “24×7 quality power” for all, JKPDD has taken up metering of unmetered consumers in the State, which includes consumers in rural areas as well. The Panchayats shall make the consumers aware about judicious use of electricity through metering and cooperate in installing meters in unmetered rural areas so as to achieve 100% metering in the State, the order states. With a view to reduce time of interruption of power supply to consumers in rural areas due to transformer damage, line faults, damage to lines due to rain, snow, storm or floods and other such reasons, the Panchayats shall report the matter to concerned SDO promptly so that restoration is carried out on fast track basis. “The Panchayats shall also maintain the monthly interruption statements of each village and submit the same to the concerned SDO for taking up the distribution stabilization works so that interruptions are reduced and reliable and quality power supply is provided to the rural areas,” the order adds. Further, it says the JKPDD, has taken up repair work of distribution system by way of replacing barbed wire, worn-out/sub-standard poles and conductors. The Panchayats shall identify such assets which are a safety hazard and source of high technical loss, so that same are replaced in a phased manner, it mentions. The order also states that towards conservation of energy through Demand Side Management (DSM), the Panchayats shall promote use of Energy Efficient LED Lamps, Fans, Standard Water Heating Elements and other home appliances. “The Panchayats shall make consumers aware about the risk involved with the use of the sub-standard appliances and the huge losses/overloading of the system leading to damage of DTs which these appliances cause and shall promote use of heating elements which bear ISl mark. All water heating elements shall be provided with automatic -thermal-cut off so that element is switched ‘Of automatically when desired temperature of water is reached,” the order mentions.
The order also mentions that Panchayats shall identify the unregistered consumers and assist the department in bridging the gap between ration card holders and electrified household. The Panchayats shall also identify those consumers who require revision of agreement as per living standard/load in use so as to achieve 100% registration of electrified households/load in use and minimize the gap between energy supplied and energy billed.
The PDD order says the Department is presently facing difficulties with regard to acquisition of land for a number of Sub-stations and Right of Way (RoW) issues while constructing HT/LT lines. “Panchayats shall help the Department in land acquisition and resolving of RoW issues so that these schemes are completed in a time-bound manner and benefit of schemes reaches general public.”
Further, Panchayats shall install and maintain street lights for lighting streets and other public places during religious and other public gatherings under funding from district plans.
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