ISLAMABAD  -   There will be no power outages on 80 percent feeders during Ramazan while the entire country will be load shedding free during Sehri and Iftar timings.

“From 2am to 6 am and 6pm to 11pm during Ramazan there will be no loadshedding in the country,” Federal Minister for Power Omar Ayub Khan told the Senate Standing Committee on Power here Friday.

The meeting of Senate Standing Committee on Power was presided over by Senator Nauman Wazir Khattak. The members present in the meeting included Senator Siraj ul Haq, Senator Molvi Faiz Muhammad, Senator Shahzaib Khan Durrani, Senator Moula Bux Chandio and senior officers of NEPRA and the Ministry of Power along with all concerned.

While discussing the feeder-wise line losses and recovery percentage for HESCO, the committee was informed that there had been reduction of 0.9 percent T&D losses during January and March, 2019 as compared to that in the previous year.

While taking up the matter of Lakhra Power Generation Company, the Committee shared its reservations with the Ministry.

Senator Moula Bux Chandio said that the government should ensure the payment of salaries to the Lakhra power company employees. The committee was informed by the officials of the power division that there is no delay in the salary of any of the employees of the plant.

The committee was further informed by the officials that they are hiring a consultant for the revival of Lakhra plant.

The committee was assured that the project will restart. While discussing the issue of transformers that has plagued consumers for long, especially during summer, the committee was informed that a crack-down had been conducted on the transformer mafia responsible for irregularities. As per the current procedure defective transformers will be replaced by the Ministry and faulty devices will be sent for repair to pre-registered workshops.

Taking up the issue of tube wells in Balochistan, the committee stressed the need for solarisation.

The ministry acknowledged the suggestion and said that solarisation is on their set of priorities for Balochistan.

While reviewing options to deal with the power crisis in Pakistan, the committee was informed of various renewable energy projects that are viable for developing countries. The Pakistan, Afghanistan, Turkmenistan Energy Pipeline and AMI Electric meters were other options that were being explored.

Omar Ayub informed the committee that with Saudi help they are planning to install 2000 MW cheap solar electricity in Balochistan. The cost of the electricity will be Rs 4.5 per unit, said the minister.

Currently, the system can provide 24500 MW electricity to the consumers, said the minister. He said that the transmission and distribution system is weak as no work was done by the previous government in this regard.

While discussing the heat rate issue as notified by NEPRA, the Committee recommended that this must be taken up as an exclusive agenda in the next meeting. It directed NEPRA to revisit calibration ad calculation of Heat Rate so that energy prices in Pakistan may be controlled.