Millions of electricity consumers in many rural areas of Barisal district have had no electricity for the last five days. Power lines were snapped when Cyclone Bulbul hit coastal areas on November 8, and these lines have not been repaired yet.
Some consumers complained that rural electricity officials have been working hard to reconnect the electricity lines to the houses of political leaders. Several consumers said they paid a fee to have their electricity connection restored, but this has not been done yet.
The power outage has also seriously disrupted mobile phone networks in many areas. The people of many villages have to recharge their mobile phones by using standby generators. They have to pay Tk 20 per hour to charge a cellphone.
The drivers of battery-powered auto-rickshaws, easy bikes and Auto vans have to pay a high price to recharge their vehicles, and that is affecting passengers.
A few villagers want help from officials of electricity supply companies to reconnect power lines, and they are willing to pay extra money for this.
Zaida Khanam, deputy general manager of Barisal Rural Electricity Association-2, denied the allegations. She said, "The devastating cyclone knocked down around 50 electricity poles in different areas of Hizla, Mehendiganj, Muladi, Aigoiljhara and different areas of Gourandi districts. As a result, there was no electricity for the last five days, and customers are naturally complaining about it."
She added that the power company has restored power to many areas, and expect to restore power to the remaining areas in the next few days.