Operational costs spiral for purchase of fuel to run generators
City business hubs feel the pinch of power outages
Refayet Ullah Mirdha
Frequent power outages in the business hubs of the city including Motijheel and Dilkusha have increased operational costs of offices manifold and snapped communication network with other countries.
As a result, the activities of many business houses, especially those dealing with export and import, have been dealt severe blows, businessmen complained.
"I have to spend around Tk 1,000 for buying diesel and petrol daily to maintain the official activities. This has significantly triggered official costs and I cannot communicate with other countries timely for frequent power outages," complained a managing director of a renowned insurance company, requesting anonymity.
He said everyday power outages occur for four to five times and each time supply resumes after a gap of one or two hours.
"I have to count an extra Tk 24,000-Tk 25,000 at the end of the month for purchasing fuel for the use of power generators," he claimed.
There are several thousand of offices in Motijheel and Dilkusha areas where the owners have to buy diesel and petrol everyday spending extra amount of money.
"During the last two months, we have been facing problems in maintaining communication with our business partners abroad. The power outages occur during communication including sending fax messages and emails," said a managing director of a travel agency at Dilkusha area.
Similarly, the power crisis took an unbearable turn in other parts of the city including old Dhaka, Naya Paltan, Kakrail, Kawran Bazar, Panthapath, Dhanmondi and Moghbazar, where many important business establishments are situated.
Sources said during the last official day Thursday the demand of power in the capital Dhaka was 1800 megawatt (mw) while the supply was only 890 mw, leaving a huge shortfall of nearly 1000mw.
The power crisis deepened as the Dhanmondi-Ulan transmission lines remained closed and three engineers from the UK are yet to arrive for repairing it.
As a result, the areas under this grid line are experiencing power outages between four and five hours daily for the last one week.
DESA sources said the power problems would not go before May next.
Engineers from the UK will arrive on April 2 to repair the Dhanmondi-Ulan transmission lines, a Dhaka Electric Supply Authority (DESA) official said.
According to Power Development Board (PDB), the demand of power was 4500mw across the country Thursday last, but power supply at 9pm Thursday was 2939mw.