LAHORE - The power consumers on Sunday found no respite from electricity outages as the Lahore Electric Supply Company continued to carry out non-stop five-hour long power suspension in several areas of the city, in addition to scheduled seven hours load-shedding. Contrary to the companys claims of five hours scheduled load-shedding, the citizens were left on the mercy of the power distributors. Criticising the prolonged power breakdowns, citizens said there was no reduction in power outages despite a considerable reduction in the use of Acs, which have been shutdown for the last few weeks. They said that power outages have ruined economy of the country and businesses, as they are helpless to do anything to counter the nuisance. They attributed the unprecedented electricity loadshedding to the incompetence of the authorities concerned and demanded the government to immediately remove those officials of the Lahore Electricity Supply Company (Lesco) who were responsible for the electricity crisis in the country like the dissolution of the Pakistan Electric Power Company (Pepco). The export-oriented industrial units in Kotlakhpat are facing 20 to 30 per cent increase in the cost of production because of power as well as gas load-shedding for long durations. They said that the unscheduled load-shedding is hitting hard not only the industrial sector, which is the hub of cottage industry of the country but also disturbed the small traders and shopkeepers. Residents of Wahdat Road, Muslim Town, Ichhra and Iqbal Town told TheNation that they were facing non-stop power suspension of three to four hours. They said that the situation had been worsening for the past two days as the electricity was absent from 8am to 10pm besides regular load-shedding of around six hours on daily basis. Same was the case with so many areas of the city including, Mughalpura, Baghbanpura, Shalarmar Town, Darogha Wala and Hurbanspura areas, where power remained suspended for up to six hours on Sunday. The loadshedding put the local dwellers at the mercy of Lesco authorities and their lives had become to standstill. Residents said that the cruelty of Lesco was not stopped because of enhanced power generation, as loadshedding after a pause of few days once again started. Meanwhile, up to six hours power outages was reported in almost all the residential areas of the city. Loadshedding-hit areas included Model Town, Garden Town, Samanabad, Multan Road, Shahdra, Mozang, Walled City, Johar Town, Iqbal Town, Chohang, Mughalpura, Ravi Road and Sabzazar. Lesco officials talking to The Nation said that Lesco has announced the schedule of loadshedding. They said long-hours power outages were carried out due to annual maintenance work in Lesco jurisdiction. They said that during the work the Lahore Electric Supply Company (LESCO) will install new transformers to ensure a smooth supply of electricity in city and surrounding localities. Salman Abduhoo