Pushing aside heavy competition from home-bred companies like BHEL and L&T, South Korean’s top power equipment manufacturer Doosan Heavy Industries & Construction Company’s Indian arm, Doosan Power Systems India (DPSI), clinched two super-critical power projects of 1,320 MW each in Uttar Pradesh. While the 2×660 MW Obra C project, in Sonebhadra district, would be a brownfield project and cost R10,416 crore, the Jawaharpur project in Etah district would be a greenfield project and cost R10,566 crore. While Doosan has emerged as the frontrunner in both the projects, BHEL was the second one, while L&T came last.
In compliance of new environmental standards for both the projects, the Energy Task Force, chaired by chief secretary Rahul Bhatnagar, adjusted the cost of expenditure on equipment and approved their revised cost.
Speaking to FE, an official of the Uttar Pradesh Rajya Vidyut Utpadan Nigam (UPRVUN) said that now that the projects have been approved by the ETF, the matter would be put up before the Cabinet. “Letters of intent would be awarded by October and we expect work to begin soon,” he said, adding that both the projects would start generating 1320 MW of power each by 2021.
With Doosan’s financial bid being the lowest, another reason for the UPRVUN aversion to hand over the work to Navratna company BHEL is the fact that it has had a not-so-happy experience with BHEL recently. “At a time when Uttar Pradesh was facing an acute power shortage and just could not afford to have any of its projects delayed, BHEL’s laxity on completing works on scheduled made it very tough for the UPPCL to bridge the power demand-supply gap in the state and also put the state government in a spot many a time,” said an official on condition of anonymity.
It may be mentioned that the Mayawati government had approved the central PSU’s offer to build the boiler, turbine and generator (BTG) of the Anpara D project in September 2007 and BHEL had bagged the modernisation and expansion of the Obra thermal stations in 2006. But due to inordinate delays, an irked chief minister Akhilesh Yadav had, in late 2012, summoned BHEL chairman of managing director BP Rao and pointed out that the state was going through a serious power crisis due to the laxity of BHEL.