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    This picture shows the Dewa power station in the Gulf emirate of Dubai, 16 April 2007

    Major Power Failure Leaves 140mln Without Electricity in Pakistan

    © AFP 2019 / RABIH MOGHRABI
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    A major power transmission line broke down early on Sunday in Pakistan in an incident being firstly blamed on a rebel attack, leaving millions without electricity.

    MOSCOW, January 26 (Sputnik) – The power failure on Sunday caused a massive blackout across the country. Numerous cities, towns and villages in the provinces of Punjab, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan were plunged into darkness, reports Dawn News.

    “This is the fourth time something like this has happened in 45 days,” said Tahir Basharat Cheema, the former managing director of Pakistan Electric Power Company (PEPCO). “This is something unprecedented and it shouldn’t have happened in quick successions,” reports Express Tribune.

    According to Quetta Electric Supply Company (QESCO) the power supply to Quetta and other parts of Balochistan was suspended as a result of technical fault in a major transmission line. However, a spokesman of the Baloch Republican Army, Sarbaz Baloch, claimed that a militant group had bombed two transmission lines in Notal area in Balochistan in an attack.

    Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif issued instructions for the immediate resumption of power supply on an emergency basis. In many areas electricity was restored within hours, reports Dawn News.

    The country's power crisis was aggravated as a result of severe shortage of furnace oil. The shortage of furnace oil had also been confirmed by the Water and Power ministry in a report on handling of furnace oil shortage issues.

    Refineries are unable to fulfill the demands of furnace oil, while a decision to purchase 12 cargoes of furnace oil has been facing a shortfall of Rs30 billion.

    Pakistan's electricity distribution system is complex and a major fault at one section often leads to chain reactions and breakdowns of power generation and transmission.

    Earlier this week, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif cancelled his trip to the World Economic Forum in Davos to deal with a severe petrol shortage at home.

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    Tags:
    natural resources, electricity, economic crisis, power cut, Pakistan Electric Power Company, Nawaz Sharif, Pakistan
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