Birgunj, May 16
Severe load-shedding and irregular power supply have added to the woes of industries and factories along the Birgunj-Pathalaiya Industrial Corridor that were already grappling for survival after months of Madhes agitation and blockade at various border points.
According to Birgunj Chamber of Commerce and Industry former chairperson Ashok Baidhya, the corridor has been receiving power for a mere six to seven hours against the official load-shedding schedule of nine hours each day.
“We need around 200 MW electricity everyday, but we’ve been receiving just 80 MW, which is way less than our actual demand,” said Baidhya.
Another Birgunj CCI former chairperson, Bijaya Sarawogi, also rued the long load-shedding hours. Birgunj CCI Chairperson Pradip Kedia highlighted the effects of irregular power supply at the industrial corridor.
“As the power supply is erratic, operation of factories and plants has become difficult,” Kedia lamented, adding, “Though we have generators, running factories on alternative source of energy is not feasible.”
Nepal Electricity Authority Birgunj Distribution Centre Chief Chutun Kumar Shreevastav conceded that power supply to the corridor had been slashed and attributed the same to reduced water level in rivers and reservoirs.
“As the flow of water in rivers and rivulets has gone down, it has affected power supply,” he said.
There are around 4,000 industries and factories, both big and small, in the industrial corridor.
A version of this article appears in print on May 17, 2016 of The Himalayan Times.