Shopping malls can remain open till 10 pm upto the 15th of the holy month of Ramadan that starts Thursday, as there is no electricity shortage in the country. State Minister for Power and Energy Nasrul Hamid declared this in a meeting with the shop-owners at Biddyut Bhaban in the city. As per existing government order, shops are allowed to stay open till 8 pm. “We have sufficient electricity supply. So, unless there is any problem, you can keep shopping malls open until 10 pm,” he told the shop owners.
After the 15th Ramadan until Eid, Hamid said the shops could do business even longer, if there were no problems in the supply side. He said the country’s power generation capacity grew to11,265 MW which is good enough to meet the peak hour demand of 8,500 MW. However, Prime Minister’s Energy Advisor Dr. Tawfiq-e-Elahi Chowdhury, who was also present at the meeting, said the matter of keeping the shops open is not linked with power supply. Rather, it is controlled by the labour law.
After the discussion with the leaders of the Bangladesh Shop Owners Association (BSOA), a number of decisions were taken by the Power Ministry. President of the BSOA Abdul Kader led the delegation of shop owners. The most important decision made was that shops could remain open until 10 pm upto Ramadan 15, and then until midnight till the end of Ramadan. But no “unnecessary lighting” will be allowed in any market place.
All the heavy industries like steel mills, welding workshops, iron shops and the pump operation must be kept shut in the peak hours during the Ramadan. The use of air-condition should be restricted. No load-shedding will be conducted by the authorities during the Iftar, Tarabi prayer and Sehri period. All the electricity generation units must be operated unless any technical fault shows up. Everybody should be very careful in consuming electricity so that there should not be any misuse. Special drive will be launched by the distribution companies to disconnect illegal connections, UNB reports.