Power failure leads to adjournment of Monsoon Session

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 07 Jul 2018 08:25:03


Special Correspondent,

Heavy downpour in city on Friday cast its shadow on ongoing Monsoon Session of State Legislature, as Legislative Assembly was adjourned without transacting any business, while Legislative Council was in session only for a brief time. As rain water gushed in electric switch room, the power supply to Vidhan Bhawan complex was switched off as a precaution throwing everything in disarray. This is the second time in 57-year history of Maharashtra Legislature that session was adjourned for power failure. In fact, history was repeated as first monsoon session held in city in 1961 too was adjourned because of power failure.

Assembly Hall was plunged into darkness and it remained so till 11.20 am. Legislative Council was also later adjourned due to heavy rains but before that Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis announced judicial probe in New Mumbai land scam case. As house resumed for a day on Friday at 10 am, Speaker Haribhau Bagde adjourned the proceedings for an hour as water had gushed inside the switch room and relay Centre at Vidhan Bhavan Complex. As House resumed it sitting, Bagde announced adjournment for the day. The announcement came as Assembly Hall was enveloped in darkness and Speaker was helped by officials who held torches as power supply was not yet resumed.

Leader of Opposition Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil, senior Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader Ajit Pawar and others tried to express their views in the House about the situation but Speaker adjourned the House. Vinod Tawde, Higher and Technical Education Minister while talking to mediapersons said, Speaker had earlier held discussion with Group leaders of all the political parties and thereafter adjourned the House. Even otherwise it was not safe to conduct the proceedings under the given conditions, he added.

Chandrashekhar Bawankule, Energy Minister informed mediapersons that there was no problem of power supply to the Vidhan Bhavan. The 11 KV Sub-station, relay centre and switch room are situated inside the Vidhan Bhavan premises. The incessant rains and downward gradient towards these rooms led to flooding and it was dangerous to continue with power supply. Therefore we requested Speaker to give us one hour to dewater the flooded premises. The Public Works Department (PWD) is responsible for the maintenance of the premises. Bawankule himself switched off the power supply from switch room to avoid any untoward incident. The power supply resumed at 11.20 am. He said there is no question of any action against any person as there was no case of negligence. It was natural calamity and no individual can be blamed for this, Bawankule added.

PWD Department with the help of Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) then drained the excess water that had gushed into the switching room. They also demolished the walls that blocked the flow of water through storm water drains. The storm water drain were choked and a team of sanitary workers cleaned. The flushing of drains revealed a catch of empty beer bottled that were dumped into it that blocked the flow of water.

Cement Roads to Blame:

One more reason for blocking the flow of drains was increase in height of road on backside of Vidhan Bhawan Complex that has been concretised. The cement road in front of museum is now on higher side and drains of this cement road are not in alignment and therefore the water gushed back inside the Vidhan Bhawan complex. This also led to water logging inside the campus. Chandrakantdada Patil, PWD Minister, said, the city received incessant rains from yesterday night. The rain water gushed into premises and therefore issue of power supply was created. PWD has issued a show cause notice to Divisional Engineer for this mess, he added. The blame game started after House was adjourned as Shiv Sena MLA Sunil Prabhu alleged that NMC is responsible for creating this mess. The State Government, he demanded should conduct a probe in failure of the civic body as their negligence wasted day’s proceedings of State Legislature.

Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil, Leader of Opposition, alleged that State Government is senseless as several liquor bottles were found in the storm water drain inside Vidhan Bhawan complex. This is also a failure of security agencies, he added and said, Government does not have proper disaster management plan in place. Manoj Saunik, Secretary, PWD, also visited the spot along with Ulhas Debadwar, Chief Engineer to review the situation.

House adjourned after power outage

This is second occasion, when the House was adjourned after 57 years on the issue of power supply on Friday. As per record available with The Hitavada, House was adjourned due to interruption in power supply on August 23, 1961 during a debate on Maharashtra Decentralisation of Power and District Council Bill. The power supply to Vidhan Bhavan got interrupted owing to which the Legislative Assembly was adjourned for about eight minutes. The business resumed after power supply was restored. However, during speech of a member, again power supply was disrupted, following which the then Deputy Speaker had adjourned the House for the day and announced that the business would resume on August 28, 1961.

State Govt fails to conduct hurdle-free monsoon session: Munde

Staff Reporter,

Maharashtra Government has failed to conduct hurdle free monsoon session in Nagpur due to improper planning, and sincerity, alleged Dhananjay Munde, Leader of opposition in Council and demanded suspension of guilty officers of Energy Department, Public Works Department and Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC). Reacting over adjournment of State Legislature on Friday due to power failure and incessant rains, Munde said, this is first occasion in the history of Monsoon Session, where house is adjourned due to power failure. This is shameful for the entire state. He has demanded to tender unconditional apology by the Chief Minister for his failure. His cottage number 22 at Ravi Bhavan was also under water for some time. He was in dark due to power failure.