Power ‘cuts’ Candolim locals


Villagers from Candolim on Tuesday marched to the electricity department office to protest against frequent power cuts in the village.
The villagers led by Candolim Deputy Sarpanch Lawrie Fernandes marched to the office of assistant engineer at Candolim and highlighted their problems. The villagers have been experiencing regular power cuts of one hour at 7.30 pm since the last 5-6 months.
The villagers called on former Calangute MLA Agnelo Fernandes who directed them to the assistant engineer at Candolim Electricity Department to put forth their views.
The villagers were unhappy to learn that the officers were not at the station. However, after a long wait the villagers could meet assistant engineer Chandrashekaran who gave them a patient hearing and explained that the power cuts were done for power shedding.
Speaking to Herald, villagers said they have been experiencing such power cuts everyday from 7.30 pm to 8.30 pm for the last 5-6 months.
“We thought the problem will end by January, but till today there is no change. Our children are finding it difficult to study. We want immediate solution to the regular power cuts or else we will be forced to come on the roads,” warned a villager.
The assistant engineer explained that the power cuts are done for load shedding and to avoid damage to the electrical equipment. 
“Power consumption has increased to a large extent, both domestic and commercial, for which we take preventive measures like load shedding. This will continue for some time till we get direct power,” said Chandrashekaran.
When contacted, former MLA Fernandes claimed said since the time BJP came to power, Candolim has been experiencing regular power cuts.
“I do not think there is further increase in power load in Candolim. The power cuts could be understandable during Christmas week or peak season, but regular power cuts without any increase in load is not justifiable,” he stated.
“Villagers had called on me and threatened to come on roads, but I advised them to meet the assistant engineer to look into the power woes. If the situation does not improve, the villagers may be forced to come on the roads,” warned Fernandes.
Calangute MLA Michael Lobo however disagreed with Fernandes saying a power sub-station at Calangute is the need of the hour which will take care of power consumption and requirements of the villages.
“I have taken up the issue with the power minister and officials of electricity department for direct power from Tivim to Calangute to solve the power woes. The power shedding will continue till a full-fledged power station comes up in Calangute,” added Lobo. [H]