State-run Power Grid Corporation of India (PGCIL) has asked the operation staff to remain alert during the mass power switch-off event after Prime Minister Narendra Modi appealed for a nine-minute blackout at 9 pm on Sunday. The national power transmission company has asked the staff to maintain strict vigil as the grid power requirement is expected to fall during the period, leading to a sudden increase in system voltage at various stations and causing an outage of grid element due to grid constraints, PGCIL said in inter-office communication.
"All Station In-charge and RTAMC Operation Staff to be on high alert during this period for the said event with the required support staff. Extreme vigil needs to be maintained during the period for said event 5th April-2020. Immediate liaison with NTAMC may be made in case of any abnormality/assistance as required," the release said.
Amid the ongoing lockdown due to COVID-19 pandemic, the power demand on April 2 was reportedly 25 per cent lower at 125.81 GW compared to 168.32 GW on the same day a year ago.
On Friday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi urged people to light lamps or candles at 9 pm on April 5 to show their solidarity in the fight against COVID-19, said Prime Minister Narendra Modi through a video message to the nation on Friday.
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"This Sunday, on April 5, we must all, together, challenge the darkness spread by the corona crisis, introducing it to the power of light. On this date, we must awaken the superpower of 130 crore Indians. We must take the super resolve of 130 crore Indians to even greater heights," Modi said in his video address. India is under a 21-day lockdown to fight against the deadly coronavirus pandemic until April 14.