Power failure hits India's financial capital
A major grid failure caused a widespread power outage in India’s financial capital Mumbai and surrounding areas on Monday, the first such blackout in more than two years that stranded thousands of train passengers and delayed college exams.
The failure was caused by “technical problems” during maintenance work, the energy minister of Mumbai’s home state of Maharashtra said in a video message. Power was later restored to many areas of the city.
Mumbai’s airport and the country’s two main stock exchanges in the city, the National Stock Exchange and the BSE, said they were operating normally.
“Power cut across the Mumbai Metropolitan Region due to grid failure,” the Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport agency said on Twitter.
Adani Power Ltd and Tata Power Co Ltd, the other two power suppliers to the city of some 20 million, said they had also been affected by the outage.
The state government has asked the suppliers to provide uninterrupted power to hospitals, many of which are treating COVID-19 patients.
Hospitals and other public institutions across India have over the years banked on emergency diesel power generators as a backup due to frequent outages caused by demand outstripping supply, although the situation is improving.
Mumbai’s trains are generally packed, moving more than 7 million people a day to their offices and factories, but their services have been curtailed due to the COVID-19 pandemic and they are carrying far fewer passengers than usual.
Still, social media was splashed with pictures of people stranded inside unlit trains and in railway stations. Trains resumed late on Monday.
The Times of India said final-year online exams across Mumbai colleges were postponed.