Tangled power lines in a busy shopping district in Rawalpindi.
Credit Lauren Frayer for NPR
Workers in a tailor's workshop in Rawalpindi, Pakistan, use manual sewing machines, and sometimes stitch suits by hand, when the power goes out. Tailors are frantically trying to fill orders for new suits in time for the end of Ramadan.
In India last week, surprise grid failures plunged more than half the country into darkness. But power outages in neighboring Pakistan have been intentional — the result of summertime energy rationing.
Despite billions of dollars in U.S. aid, Pakistan has been unable to keep the lights on. Now the situation is getting worse, with riots erupting over factories forced offline.
We are covering other news today, including news out of Syria, where there have been some high-level defections. The prime minister of Syria fled to neighboring Jordan just two months after he was appointed. He says he has joined the opposition. Syrian rebels say that three other cabinet members also defected. These are the highest level departures from the government of Bashar al-Assad since the uprising began well over a year ago.