The BJP today painted a grim picture of power availability in Odisha, blaming the BJD government for frequent undeclared power cuts across the state and failure to keep its promise of undisturbed electricity supply and electrification of all villages by May. The secretary of BJP’s Odisha unit, Kalandi Samal, told reporters here that the state government while reviewing power scenario ahead of summer had made a promise to ensure round-the-clock electricity supply. However, the Naveen Patnaik regime failed to keep its word as people are made to suffer due to frequent power cuts in sweltering heat.
Similarly, though the BJD government had announced that it would provide electricity to all villages by May, around 39 lakh of over one crore hosues are still deprived of power, the BJP leader claimed, asking the government to give an explanation. Also, the state government had announced that it would provide free power to all people living below the poverty line, but in reality around 40 per cent of the BPL people were deprived of electricity, he pointed out.
He said, “The state government itself stated sometime back that Rs 2,727 crore had been received from the Centre for electrification.” The state government had informed the Assembly in December, 2015 that on the basis of its detailed report, the Centre had sanctioned Rs 1656.48 crore for electrification of all villages in 30 districts of Odisha, he said.
In addition, Rs 560 crore for rural electrification and Rs 521 crore for putting in place power infrastructure in urban areas of the state had been sanctioned, Samal claimed. Apart from power cuts, people in most parts of the state are suffering due to chronic low voltage electricity caused by delay in installing 500 new sub-stations, he says.
Though around 27 MoUs were signed for the setting up of Independent Power Plants, only four were working at present, while no work had commenced for 20 such proposed projects due to state government’s inefficiency, Samal regretted. Similarly, several proposals for setting up hydel, solar and wind power projects have been kept in cold storage due to inaction of the BJD regime, he says.