ISLAMABAD: The National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra) has imposed a fine of Rs5 million on K-Electric due to its failure to provide reliable power supply for consumers on a non-discriminatory basis.
Pursuant to media reports about prolonged load-shedding by K-Electric during Ramazan last year and the Sindh High Court’s directive to Nepra to ensure compliance with the earlier order dated March 25, 2016 for supplying electricity to all consumers on a non-discriminatory basis, the regulator constituted a committee to verify facts and ensure implementation of the order.
The committee visited K-Electric’s generation, transmission and distribution facilities from June 1 to 5, 2017 in order to monitor and verify load-shedding in different areas of Karachi, generation capacity of the company and its utilisation, the number of interruptions/faults and implementation of investment plans. The committee submitted a comprehensive report to Nepra which raised serious concern over K-Electric’s performance and decided to initiate legal proceedings against the company.
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According to Nepra, an explanation followed by a show cause notice was issued to K-Electric. Two opportunities of hearing were provided, wherein K-Electric representatives made their submissions, but they failed to provide any satisfactory response to the alleged violations.
Nepra noted that different units of Bin Qasim Power Station-I tripped frequently during May 2017 because of improper maintenance by K-Electric. In addition to that, a huge number of unplanned and prolonged interruptions occurred due to the company’s weak and fragile distribution network.
“All this resulted in extended load-shedding, ranging from 14 to 16 hours in Karachi during May 2017,” Nepra said.
Consequently, Nepra imposed a fine of Rs5 million on K-Electric due to non-compliance with performance standards, distribution code and the regulator’s directive regarding provision of electricity to all consumers without any discrimination who meet the eligibility criteria.
Defending its position, K-Electric said it “is a law-abiding and responsible organisation which ensures compliance with all respective regulations and guidelines. “The power utility will approach the regulatory authority for reconsideration of its decision,” said a K-Electric spokesperson.
(This news/article originally appeared in The Express Tribune on September 28th, 2018)