TVNL plant in Lalpania, Bokaro
Ranchi, June 12: A 24-hour shutdown of one of its units at Tenughat Vidyut Nigam Ltd (TVNL) for preventive maintenance triggered widespread power cuts in 14 of 28 districts of the state today.
The blackouts came on a day temperatures touched 41 degrees in Ranchi and 44.8 degrees at Daltonganj, even as rains continued to play truant in the state.
“We have shut down one of our units so that we can carry out preventive maintenance. Machines cannot be forced to run 24 hours a day for all days of the year. We have sought prior permission for this shutdown from Jharkhand State Electricity Board,” Ramavtar Sahu, TVNL general manager told The Telegraph over the phone from Lalpania in Bokaro district.
As the maintenance job is likely to take more than 24 hours, the unit would be lit up only tomorrow night. “Re-synchronisation of unit into the state grid would, however, take some more time,” Sahu added.
Figures released by the regional load despatch centre indicated that with one TVNL unit shut down, total generation in the state stood at 200MW, contributed by the sole functioning unit of TVNL.
There were more problems in store as Patratu Thermal reported “zero” generation because of incomplete repairs at the two units which had been shut down yesterday following tube leakages in boiler units.
Against a peak demand of more than 850MW and total supply restricted to a paltry 200MW, efforts to bridge the demand-supply gap were made by drawing as much as 340MW from the central pool. However, a deficit of over 300MW left JSEB with no option but to resort to blackouts throughout its command areas in Ranchi, West Singhbhum, parts of East Singhbhum, Seraikela-Kharsawan, Gumla, Lohardaga, Khunti, Simdega, Chatra, Latehar, Koderma, Palamau, Giridih and Deoghar.
Even the state capital was not spared as power officials revealed that supply to Ranchi was restricted to 90MW against a normal demand of 120MW.
“I am stuck as I cannot run my computer to apply for admission to BTech courses at the various universities,” lamented Madhuchanda, a student.
“My inverter has failed. I could not sleep last night due to the intense heat. Today, there is endless hours of load-shedding. It will be another sleepless night,” said Barun Ray.