Newly-appointed Power Minister Veerappa Moily refrained from blaming states for over-drawing electricity that may have led to the collapse of three grids yesterday, but asked states to maintain grid discipline and said he would come down hard on anyone found to be stealing power.
“The government provides enough funds to the state governments to train people and states must utilise that fund,” he said. Moily added that he would hold a meeting with chief ministers of the affected states on 6 August.
Speaking to CNN-IBN, Moily added that the reason for yesterday’s outage was not as simple as overdrawing leading to an overloading of the grid system. “A committee has been set up and it is looking into it. A report will be given in two weeks, ” he said.
Taking over the reins of the Ministry at a time when it is steeped in crisis, Moily will have to address issues ranging from the failure of the three grids that plunged 21 states into darkness, to fuel shortages and the financial health of the distribution companies.
“I always like challenges in life…these things (electricity transmission and fuel issues) are very sensitive rather hyper sensitive in the sector, problems will crop up at the same time how we combat these problems that becomes a challenge,” he added.
The country suffered its worst power crisis yesterday, impacting more than half of the 1.2 billion population, as the three Grids — Northern, Eastern and North Eastern — collapsed.
More than 21 states went without electricity for several hours crippling normal life for more than 600 million people.
Despite the outage however, Moily maintained that the grid failure was an aberration. “We have the best power grid in Asia. A national outage like yesterday’s will not repeat,” he said.