Srinagar, Mar 28: When entire Jammu and Kashmir is crying for the restoration of high-speed internet, Power Development Department (PDD) has asked consumers to pay bills online in order “to break the coronavirus chain”.
“To break the Covid-19 chain, the PDD has asked its consumers to avail online bill payment facility from the comfort and safety of their homes. Consumers can pay their electricity bills online on the website https://billsahuliyat.jkpdd.net/,” said an official spokesman.
However, the diktat comes at a time when Kashmir has no access to high-speed internet. Plus most of the poor consumers do not have access to smartphones or computers to pay the tariff online.
Under fire, PDD chief engineer Ajaz Dar said he would take up the issue with higher-ups. “The people who have access to the internet can pay online. Those who cannot pay their bills will not be penalized. They can pay in April. As far as order is concerned, I will talk to the secretariat and revert on Monday”, Dar told The Kashmir Monitor.
For the last few days, electricity consumption has shot up again prompting the authorities to revert to the load shedding. “Consumption has increased since the temperature has dropped. The majority of people use electricity for warming rooms. After the improvement of temperature the power consumption had dropped significantly”, he said
Official figures reveal that in the last 24 hours, people have consumed 31.1 million units in the Kashmir valley. “We have reached a peak load of 1450 megawatt in the last 24 hours. We had done away with load shedding in some areas after the consumption had dropped. Curtailment was now only for one to two hours from three to six hours earlier,” said Dar.
Last month the government had commissioned much-awaited 320MVA Alasteng and 50 MVA Bandipora grid stations. The installed capacity of Kashmir had reached 1600 MVA against the peak demand of 2100 MVA.