Kohistan's Kandia tehsil residents living without electricity.

SHANGLA -- Twenty-seven-year-old daily wager Ijaz Ahmad from Zango Kool village of Kandia tehsil of Upper Kohistan walks for 25-30 minutes every second day from his house, covering three-kilometre-long rough terrain, to reach a shop in Thoti Bazaar to charge his and his family members' mobile phones as the August 2022 floods had swept away a mini power station (MHP), supplying electricity to his village.

The Kandia tehsil once had around 50 MHPs, but all of them were swept away in floods, locals said, adding they restored some stations on self-support basis.

'An MHP was built on the Thoti River, which supplied electricity to Zango Kool, but it was washed away by floods. Ever since we go to Thoti Bazaar to charge our cell phones in Amir Jan's shop because we no longer have power supply,' Ijaz Ahmad, the daily wager told Dawn.

The floods left painful stories behind as several people were killed in Kohistan and Lower and Upper Kolai Pallas districts.

August 2022 floods destroyed all mini hydropower stations in the region

The videos and photos of five men tied with ropes trapped in the middle of Dubair River had drawn the country men's attention as four of them had been swept away by ferrous currents.

According to Provincial Disaster Management Authority, 23 people were killed and eight injured in the three districts. PDMA and the district administration don't have data on MHPs.

Saifullah, an activist, said Thoti had been hub of MHPs and watermills. 'The locals have rehabilitated three MHPs after collecting Rs2,000 per household,' he added, but said they still faced low voltage issue.

'We had a 25-kilowatt turbine installed on Thoti River, and had enough electricity to run home appliances in this far-off mountainous village. But, our power station was gone in floods, plunging us in darkness,' Saifullah...

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