India's average daily electricity use in May fell 10.4% from April, a Reuters analysis of government data showed, as states imposed lockdowns to rein in a devastating second wave of coronavirus infections.
Average power generation fell to 3,664 billion units in May from 4,074 billion in April, the analysis of data from federal grid regulator POSOCO showed, with output beginning to increase in the last week of the month.
Electricity use in India generally peaks in May, as more people turn to air-conditioning amid sweltering temperatures at the height of the summer season and industrial activity rises.
Government officials had said the recovery in power demand in late 2020 was a sign the economy was beginning to recover from its worst slump in decades. Industries and offices account for half of India's annual electricity consumption.
More than three-quarters of states reported lower electricity use in May than April, the data showed. India's power use rose more than 7.2% in May over last year, when a nationwide lockdown was imposed.
Strict lockdowns in the southern states of Kerala and Karnataka, the northern state of Rajasthan, city state Delhi and Sikkim in the northeast pushed electricity use to levels lower than the corresponding period last year, the data showed.
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