A minor reshuffle of portfolios in the Union Cabinet is likely to bring back Chidambaram as finance minister while Sushil Kumar Shinde may be the next home minister
Chidambaram has taken a major share of the pie of the Empowered Group of Ministers and Group of Ministers after the exit of Pranab Mukherjee.
Chidambaram now heads seven out of the 15 Group of Ministers (GoM) and two Empowered Group of Ministers (EGoMs), followed by Defence Minister AK Antony who chairs three EGoMs and four GoMs.
Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar, who a fortnight ago had threatened to pull out of government contending lack of say in governance to coalition partners, has been made chairman of one EGoM and three GoMs.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has also pruned the number EGoMs from the earlier 12 to six at present. Earlier, all the EGoMs were chaired by Mukherjee.
The list of GoMs has also been brought down to 15 from the earlier 27.
The six EGoMs wound up by the government include those on the Food Security Act, National Highways Development Project, issues related to SEZs, and under-recoveries of oil marketing companies.
Antony chairs the EGoMs on gas pricing, mass rapid transit systems, and ultra mega power projects, Chidambaram heads EGoMs on telecom spectrum allocation, and reforms in the Central public sector enterprises.
Pawar has been made the chairman of the EGoM on drought.
The Northern Grid, which collapsed on Monday and was restored after 15 hours, again tripped on Tuesday. The Eastern and North-Eastern transmission lines too failed this afternoon, worsening the power situation in the country
New Delhi: India faced a major power crisis for the second consecutive day on Tuesday as three grids serving Northern, Eastern and North-Eastern regions failed this afternoon, leading to 200 coal miners getting trapped in eastern state of West Bengal and throwing normal life out of gear in 22 states, reports PTI.
As the grids collapsed around 1pm, miners in Eastern Coalfields got trapped in Sodepur and Satgram in Burdwan districts of
The Centre blamed overdrawal by states in the Eastern region for Tuesday's grid collapse. Power Grid Corp promised normalcy would be restored by 7pm.
The states affected included
In Kolkata, Metro Rail services were unaffected, according to state Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee. The state government declared holiday in its offices after 3 PM.
The Railways network across major parts of the country was among the worst hit services, as trains, other than those running on diesel engine, stopped midway.
The Northern Grid, which collapsed on Monday and was restored after 15 hours, again tripped on Tuesday. The Eastern and North-Eastern transmission lines too failed this afternoon, worsening the power situation in the country when it is facing drought-like situation in most parts.
"Some sections are creating problems by overdrawing power," Power Grid CMD RN Nayak said.
This is probably the first time that three grids have collapsed simultaneously.
When asked about the reasons for the failure of grids, Shinde said some states are drawing electricity over and above their limits. "This was creating problems," the minister said.
"This morning only, I was told (by officials) that about 3,000 MW extra power has been over drawn from the Eastern Grid. We have given the direction to either stop it (over drawal) or take action against them," he added.
"Grid incident occurred at 13:00 hours affecting the Northern Grid, Eastern Grid and North Eastern Grid," National Load Despatch Centre (NLDC) said. The authorities began to restore power for essential services on a priority basis at around 1500 hours in the National Capital and other states.
All the grids are being run by the state-owned Power Grid Corporation, which operates more than 95,000 circuit km of transmission lines.
One circuit km refers to one kilometre of electrical transmission line.
The authorities began restoring power to essential services at around 1500 hours, pursuant to which many services including Delhi Metro resumed operations. Services at airports and hospitals remained largely unaffected due to backup electricity available with them.
Nearly 300 trains came to a grinding halt at various places due to the grids' failure, including on the busy Delhi-Howrah route. The Metro services in Kolkata were also affected, while the
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