The Indian electricity grid is robust and stable, the power ministry said. (Photo Credit: Image by Foundry Co from Pixabay )
The central government has said that there was no danger of any electricity grid failure during the "coronavirus blackout" on Sunday. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had on Friday urged people to switch off the lights at their homes and light up lamps, candles or mobile phone torches for nine minutes at 9 pm on Sunday to display the country's "collective resolve" to defeat COVID-19 pandemic.
Following Prime Minister Narendra Modi's appeal to switch off lights on Sunday night, there have been concerns that the blackout may impact the electricity grid due sudden drop in peak power demand. Allaying these fears, the power ministry said these "apprehensions are misplaced and all protocols are in place to handle the fluctuation in demand".
The power ministry in a statement on Saturday noted there have been some concerns that the blackout on Sunday may cause instability in the grid and fluctuation in voltage, which may harm the electrical appliances.
The Indian electricity grid is robust and stable, and adequate arrangements and protocols are in place to handle the variation in demand, it explained.
The ministry further said the Prime Minister's appeal is to simply switch off the lights, and there is no call to switch off either street lights or appliances like computers, TVs, fans, refrigerators and ACs in homes.
Additionally, the lights in hospitals and all other essential services like public utilities, municipal services, offices, police stations and manufacturing facilities will remain on, it said.
All local bodies have been advised to keep the street lights on for public safety, the power ministry said.
Opposition parties have criticised the blackout call given by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. A state minister has also requested people not to switch off the lights at 9 pm on Sunday.
The country had gone through a grid failure in 2012 due to technical reasons. However, India presently has a strong transmission network which is capable of handling fluctuations in power demand. (With PTI Inputs)