Life is shuffling back to normal after Cyclone Fani leaves a trace of obliteration in several parts of coastal Odisha; massive restoration work across 10,000 villages and 52 urban areas happened in full swing.
Around 10 million people in Odisha were grappling with the inconvenience of disruption in power supply in the aftermath of the Cyclone Fani which ravaged the state with wind velocity at a speed of 200 KMPH on May 3, 2019. As per the Government estimate, most of coastal Odisha, including the state capital Bhubaneswar witnessed uprooting of 100,000 electricity poles. Several towers, substations and low transmission lines were completely damaged.
Sensing the intensity of the disaster caused by Fani, Shri Harish Agarwal, President – IEEMA visited Cuttack and Bhubaneswar followed by IEEMA writing to Odisha Chief Minister, Shri Naveen Patnaik and offered all possible help in terms of making available electrical equipment on a war footing to the disaster hit State. IEEMA’s senior officials met Mr. AK Bhalla, Secretary – Ministry of Power and offered to rebuild the state machinery with the help of its membership. A nodal office was set up in Bhubaneshwar for coordination between various state agencies, providing timely assistance and feedback to its team and state entities at ground zero.
Shri Harish Agarwal and Shri Sunil Misra, Director General – IEEMA, visited Bhubaneswar and conducted series of meetings with Shri Hemant Sharma, IAS, Commissioner and Secretary Energy – Govt of Odisha; Shri Md. Sadique Alam, IAS, CEO – CESU and Shri Bibhupasad Mohapatra, Director Finance – OPTCL. Shri Sunil Misra extended the offer of IEEMA member Supreme & Co. Ltd. in erecting the fallen transmission tower pro-bono. In order to accelerate relief and restoration works in the affected areas, IEEMA officials also assisted the State entities like OPTCL (Odisha Power Transmission Corporation Limited) and CESU (Central Electricity Supply Utility). All the necessary help was extended for restoration of electricity in affected areas of the state.
Current Situation of Power Restoration
Energy infrastructure gained pre-FANI status through major repairing and strengthening in all affected districts and more than 90% consumers were given electricity connection. In Puri, electricity restoration work was carried out in full swing. In such a scenario, IEEMA and its membership contributed its bit towards bringing back lives on track in the state. In the situation of dire need, all members of IEEMA stood with people of Odisha with a commitment to take up on priority any assistance which the State Government and Power Utilities were for faster restoration of the electrical infrastructure.