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New Delhi: Delhi’s electricity demand touched an all-time high of 7,241 megawatt (MW) on Monday afternoon as north-west India continues to bear the brunt of a searing heatwave.

This is the highest peak power demand recorded in any Indian city as the region awaits the arrival of the southwest monsoon, which currently lies over east Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, parts of Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat, and is expected to advance into the north-western region around 3 July.

Electricity is supplied to Delhi consumers by Anil Ambani-controlled BSES Rajdhani Power Ltd (BRPL), BSES Yamuna Power Ltd (BYPL), Tata Power Delhi Distribution Ltd (TPDDL), Military Engineering Services (for Delhi Cantonment) and the New Delhi Municipal Council.

“Today on July 1, 2019, also the day when the Delhi power sector was unbundled, Delhi’s peak power demand has broken all previous records. It touched 7,241 MW at 3:29 pm, the highest recorded in the history of the city. It broke the previous record of 7,016 MW recorded on July 10, 2018," BSES said in a statement.

This comes in the backdrop of mercury soaring in the national capital, with cooling load being the main reason behind the increase in Delhi’s power consumption.

“Delhi’s peak power demand during the summer of 2019 may clock 7,400 MW, an increase of over 250% over the peak power demand of 2,879 MW in 2002," the BSES statement added.

“This summer season, the peak demand in Delhi is increasing with each passing day. We are expecting the Delhi peak demand to touch 7,500 MW and Tata Power-DDL’s to cross 2,250 MW in the coming days," Sanjay Banga, chief executive officer, TPDDL said in a statement.

The all-time high price for electricity in the Indian spot market was 18.2 per unit for 4 October delivery last year. Of the estimated 1,200 billion units (BU) of electricity generated in India, the short-term market comprises 130-150BU. Of India’s installed capacity of 356.817 gigawatt (GW), peak electricity demand has been low due to issues such as precarious finances of some state-owned electricity distribution companies, which prevents them from procuring power of the required quantum.

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