LAHORE - Energetic babus of Punjab have been enjoying two-day weekend, thanks to electricity load managers.

The officials of all-powerful Punjab Secretariat have been working five days a week while the employees of ‘weak’ private sector have only one day-off.

Punjab is the most populous province of a country facing energy crunch for last many years. The decision of two-day weekend was taken to ‘save’ energy but the department concerned has no data showing how many megawatts have been saved since the start of this campaign in April, 2013.  Giving example of the developed world, a secretary of this ‘most developed’ province of Pakistan says two-day weekend “isn’t a bad thing as holidays help rejuvenate the spirit of officials and workers.” Requesting anonymity, a provincial energy department babu says: “Bureaucrats misuse the facility of two holidays and officers have become habitual of leaving early on Friday and appear late on Monday.”

Admitting that his department has no energy saving date, he said: “No substantial power saving has been done due to two holidays a week, however, the fuel consumption might have been reduced.”

In 2010 too, the Punjab government opted for this programme and a few months later the decision was called back. The Punjab Civil Secretariat has been enjoying two days off. The departments providing essential public services like health, education, police, rescue and sanitation etc working the two day weekend was cancelled.

The energy crisis has been looming large and authorities have been making rhetoric to get it over by never-ending deadlines.