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Tackle power crisis on a war footing

Power cuts have made life quite miserable. The onus for this squarely lies on the electrification of the countryside carried out at break-neck speed to garner votes. The uncontrolled proliferation of urban conglomerations has also increased the demand. The western designs of urban buildings have made life totally dependent on electricity.

The cost of power production through hydel, thermal and nuclear plants is extremely high. Electricity becomes costlier if one adds the transmission and distribution charges to the cost of production. The supply of free power to certain sections on political considerations has made the situation messy.

Every Indian should realise the value of electricity and refrain from wasting it for luxurious living. In the Seventies, the late King of Iran, Raza Pehlvi, once said that petrol was too valuable a commodity to be wastefully burnt out by the vehicles. Taking a cue from this, we should learn to be more prudent in consuming power.

The government should explore ways and means to tackle the power crisis on a war footing.

S.S. BENIWAL, Chandigarh











Dear readers

Letters to the Editor, neatly hand-written or typed, upto 150 words, should be sent to the Letters Editor, The Tribune, Sector 29 C, Chandigarh. Letters can also be emailed at the following address: letters@tribunemail.com

— Editor-in-Chief

 

II

With the onset of summer, there is power crisis everywhere including Delhi. Though the National Capital alone is in need of 3,400 MW, the overall production is only 2,400 MW. Thus, there is a shortfall of 800 MW of electricity in Delhi alone. If this is the case of the National Capital, what would be the fate of the rest of the country?

If power is very much important for the country’s development, this problem must be given priority. There is need to develop suitable alternatives to electricity.

VIPAN KUMAR, Amritsar

III

I refer to the news-item “PSEB grapples with rising cases of power theft” (May 5). The PSEB officers have failed to take action against the culprits for reasons best known to them. Take the example of Guru Gobind Singh Thermal Plant. There are hundreds of jhuggies inside and outside the plant which are major sources of power theft, but no action has been taken against anyone. The PSEB Enforcement staff visit the site but they don’t take any action. Moreover, the slum dwellers rent out their hutments to others.

Accountability must be fixed on the General Manager for power theft. Action must be taken against the culprits to save the public from power cuts.

KULAWANT SINGH, Nabha

IV

The Supreme Court has banned overloading of all transport vehicles. Overloading has led to avoidable consumption of diesel and increased exhaust emission, polluting the environment. The extra transport burden passed on to the consumer has resulted in the cost escalation of all articles of mass consumption like food grains, cement etc. The prices of food grains have more than doubled.

Our oil import bill has gone up drastically. Can we afford it? The oil reserves are fast depleting. We must conserve oil by all possible means at our disposal. The laws should be suitably amended for the purpose.

R.C. GOYAL, Kurukshetra

Kargil: no real lessons learnt

I refer to Air Commodore (retd) Jasjit Singh’s article “Kargil and after” (May 10) with reference to General V.P. Malik’s book Kargil: From Surprise to Victory. Mere intelligence failure, even if presumed there was any (none so in the light of clear warnings by RAW and IB as told by successive former Army Chiefs at relevant times) could not be an excuse for such large-scale intrusion.

No professional Army could expect its enemy to come and reveal their plans. The junior commanders having eyeball contact did inform about physical enemy presence in Op Vijay area as early as Jan-Feb 1999. Sadly, the commanders ignored this. So were the correct threat perceptions posed in the War game for reasons unknown and not commented in the book.

As regards the inferences of the Kargil Review Committee, it admitted that as it was not under the Commission of Inquiry Act, its terms did not warrant fixing responsibility for intrusion. Surprisingly, for an episode like Kargil, there has been no judicious scrutiny by a suitable panel under the Commission of Inquiry Act. Consequently, how could real lessons be learnt when truth still is shrouded in mystery, half-truths and controversies?

Maj MANISH BHATNAGAR (retd), Advocate, Punjab & Haryana High Court, Chandigarh

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