More than 80 tribal families that live in the hamlet of Panappalli in the Anaikatti Hills are fighting a tough battle against poor electricity supply that is pushing their lives down, even as a Government sanction to set up an electricity transformer to their village sleeps on the table of officials.
The hamlet situated more than 25 kms away from the city was has been receiving electricity through a transformer located at Kondanur Pudhur which takes electricity to two hamlets including Panappalli and Kandivazhi, another dead end hamlet.
Though there were not many issues with Kandivazhi regarding electricity supply, which hosts only 30 families, the power lines leading to Panappalli were creating frequent trouble for the villagers.
“We were given only single phase electricity, which does not give a balanced load of electricity. There is a heavy load at times leading to damage in plugged electronic items and at times the supply is not even sufficient to charge mobile phone,” said R. Selvam, a resident.
K. Malliga, another resident from Panappalli said that because of poor supply, a bore well set up in their village often does not work adding that they are forced to walk more than half a km to fetch water from a well outside their village.
“The bore well is our only source of water and our village is located far away from the nearby water body. Since the power supply is poor, it becomes a deep inconvenience and danger for us in a landscape surrounded by forests,” she said.
She further added that children of the village are also forced to study using candles and torch lights as the light bulbs do not receive ample power supply to burn bright. More than 50 school going children are in the village.
The people of the hamlet raised a complaint with officials and a sanction order arrived to set up a transformer exclusively for the village. However, despite arriving three years ago, when the local body was functioning, the work has not commenced.
“Materials arrived three years back immediately after the order came. But they did not start work and demanded help from the villagers. We offered to provide an earth mover and yet, the work did not start,” said N. Palanisamy, former Ward Member of the Second Ward.
Reacting to the issue, Assistant Engineer of Chinnathadagam M. Devarajan said that the work delayed in order to set up a new supply to Dhumanur and Chembukkarai, which had no electricity since then.
“The landscape is tougher unlike other areas and is undulating. The material is ready, once we start, we would be able to finish it within a few months,” he said.