"Sakshi Dhoni, wife of former India cricket captain MS Dhoni, on Monday, 25 April, questioned the "power crisis in Jharkhand" in a tweet, as several states face massive electricity demands in lieu of heatwaves spreading across the country.
Dhoni said in a tweet, "As a tax payer of Jharkhand just want to know why is there a power crisis in Jharkhand since so many years ? We are doing our part by consciously making sure we save energy! (sic)"
The people of the state are suffering from frequent powercuts as most parts of the state are experiencing a temperature above 40 degrees Celsius.
Heatwave gripped West Singhbhum, Koderma, and Giridih districts, while it is likely to spread to Ranchi, Bokaro, East Singbhum, Garhwa, Palamu, and Chatra by 28 April, NDTV reported.
'I Am Also a Consumer Like You': Goa Electricity Department
Meanwhile, the twitter handle of the Goa Electricity Department tweeted about power cuts late on Monday, with the official handling the social media account stating, I also have no lights and would be anytime fadding aways (sic) from you all until supply restored and mobile and laptop charged."
The tweet was later deleted.
The Twitter handle added in the comments, "Why What??? or why surprise??? I am also a consumer like you now out of office but only a dept person on twitter. No special service to me I go through the same route as you all to find better solutions and to pass it on if any. (sic)."
Rising Electricity Demand, Heatwaves & Power Cuts
To deal with the rising power demand, Union Power Minister RK Singh and Railways Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw held a meeting on Monday to discuss strategies for dealing with the situation.
The meeting came in wake of reports that suggested the coal stock position at the Central Electricity Authority (CEA) supervised 173 power plants was lower than the prescribed level.
Further, media reports have suggested that coal inventories had dipped to the lowest since 2014 at the beginning of the financial year to nine days as against the Centre's mandated 24 days' worth of stocks, news agency IANS reported.
Moreover, the CEA daily coal report said last week that coal stock at 81 out of the 150 government owned power plants is low. On the other hand, power demand has increased from 106.6 billion units (BU) in 2019 to 124.2 BU in 2021 to 132 BU in 2022.
Demand for power, and coal, increased as temperatures rose to 42.6 degrees Celsius on 20 April, the hottest (for the day) in five years, according to the India Meteorological Department.
The national average maximum temperature on the other hand, reached almost 33.2 degree Celsius in March, the highest on record since authorities started collecting the data in 1901.
Maharashtra, Odisha, UP, Others Face Outages
Meanwhile, financial capital Mumbai and adjoining suburbs witnessed a power outage on Tuesday morning.
This comes at a time when Maharashtra is reeling under power deficit, which has led discoms to compulsorily cut power supply to some pockets, PTI reported.
Some parts of central Mumbai, along with suburbs like Bhandup and Mulund within the municipal limits of Mumbai, and the adjoining cities of Thane and Dombivili faced a power outage from around 10 am, as per various reports.
Meanwhile, the Odisha government on Monday suspended classes of all school students for five days effective from Tuesday, due to the prevailing heat wave.
Planned blackouts have been triggered in at least seven states in the country, including Uttar Pradesh (UP), as experts worry that several parts of India could face a serious power crisis this summer.
The peak demand in UP recorded in April is more than 21,000 megawatt (MW), which is more by 2,000 MW in comparison to the same corresponding period last year.
The state is said to be grappling a demand-supply gap of around 2,000 MW.
Meanwhile, as per an internal report, available with the state load dispatch centre (SLDC), villages are getting power supply, on most days, for 13-14 hours only against their entitlement of 18 hours; nagar panchayats as well as tehsil headquarters are getting power for 18-19 hours against the official schedule of 21 hours 30 minutes, Hindustan Times reported.
(With inputs from IANS, Hindustan Times, and NDTV.)