Sri Lankan PM orders probe into power cuts

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Colombo, April 19 (IANS) Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe on Tuesday told authorities to submit a report over the sudden power cuts in parts of the country during the traditional New Year.

Sri Lanka celebrated its traditional Sinhala and Tamil New Year this week. But many complained that they were faced with power outages despite an assurance from the government of uninterrupted power supply during the New Year season, Xinhua reported.

Wickremesinghe had informed relevant authorities to provide a complete report regarding the matter.

Sri Lanka’s power sector has been facing a crisis, with three nationwide power failures reported since September last year.

The latest breakdown saw a power cut of for more than seven hours, the longest power failure to be reported in Sri Lanka in 20 years.

It occurred due to an explosion in an electricity transformer in the outskirts of the capital which prompted authorities to initiate a probe.

Days later, another substation in Kotugoda, in the suburbs of the capital, caught fire after exploding, plunging parts of the country into darkness.

Experts from Germany arrived in the country last month to inspect the two transformers which caught fire and the reasons which led to the power failures.

The government has announced that it would seek assistance and support from China to operate the country’s main power plant.

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