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Blackout: Ahsan Iqbal says PM Imran Khan tried to ‘reboot’ country

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PML-N secretary-general Ahsan Iqbal speaking about the power outage in a video message released by the PML-N on Twitter, January 10, 2021. — Still from video courtesy Twitter/PML-N

PML-N secretary-general Ahsan Iqbal on Sunday   derided Prime Minister Imran Khan over the power failure that occurred across Pakistan late Saturday night, saying that the premier had “attempted to reboot the country”.

“The country’s economy is in the doldrums. We have mounting deficits. Imran Khan thought: ‘Why don’t we reboot the country like a mobile phone? Maybe it’ll work’,” Iqbal said, mockingly.

“He tried to shut down the entire power system and restart it.

“Imran sahab, this is a country, not a mobile phone which will begin working after rebooting it. For God’s sake do not play with the country like this. Hand in your resignation and go home,” the PML-N leader said.

Iqbal said that this unprecedented shutdown “proves that this government is incompetent and unqualified”.

Cities plunge into darkness

A massive power outage was reported late Saturday night from several cities across Pakistan.

The cities facing disruption included Karachi, Lahore, Peshawar, Multan, Quetta, Rawalpindi, Faisalabad, Muzaffargarh, Narowal, Bhakkar, Kabirwala, Khanewal, Bahawalpur and Sukkur.

The breakdown extended as far as Azad Kashmir. Furthermore, according to Geo News‘ Nadeem Kausar, 29 districts of Balochistan were without power.

Mobile and internet services were also affected due to the breakdown and continued to remain disrupted the next day.

‘Power will be restored within the next few hours’

Addressing a press conference alongside Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Shibli Faraz today morning, Minister for Power Omar Ayub said a technical fault was reported at the Guddu power plant at 11:41pm last night when the frequency fell from 50 to zero in seconds.

“We energised Tarbela power plant twice, which initiated the restoration process,” he said, adding that electricity has been restored in Islamabad, Faisalabad, Jhang and Multan, while K-Electric has been provided 400MVA.

Omar Ayub said teams are facing difficulties due to heavy fog and the exact reason behind the technical fault will be identified once the fog lifts.

“The reason for the breakdown has not been ascertained yet. The technical fault occurred in a particular area,” he said.

He said power will be restored across the country within the next few hours.

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