Power min extends supply cord to crisis-hit UP

Written by feBureau | New Delhi | Updated: May 31 2014, 06:54am hrs
The power ministry has come to the rescue of the UP government, which is staring at a major crisis leading to outages of over 16 hours in a day in many parts of the state.

In a statement on Friday, the ministry blamed the Akhilesh Yadav government for the current mess where the available power from the central pool was not being procured while only half of the state's internal generation of 10,100 MW was being utilised.

The availability of power from the Central Generating Power Stations (CGPS) to UP is also normal. The state is not taking power equivalent to its allocation from gas-based stations of Anta, Aurayia and Dadri and in case requisition is made by the state distribution utilities, about 300 MW can be made available immediately. The coal stock position of other state thermal units is comfortable and adequate, the ministry said in a statement.

Sources said the power ministry's offer to the state has come after the intervention of the Prime Minister's Office. As the power situation worsened late Thursday, the PMO is learnt to have sought details. Prime Minister Narendra Modi represents Varanasi in the Lok Sabha.

The power situation in the state showed marked improvement just after the BJP's electoral victory but quickly worsened thereafter. The situation is so bad that even district headquarter towns in the state are getting only 14 hours of electricity a day and villages around 8to 9 hours.

The peak demand of UP is of the order of 12,700 MW out of which around 10,700 MW is met leaving a shortfall of around of 2,000 MW at present. The Paricha plant of 500 MW capacity which went on forced outage on Thursday, has been restored and is generating on full load.

However, problem is now coming from another private sector plant Anpara-C of 600 MW which is out because of non-procurement of imported coal by the generating company. Coal supply to that plant from Coal India is more than 90% which is as per the linkage granted to that plant.

The power ministry has also said that the state government could also requisition power from other surplus states of northern region for which there is no transmission constraint. Further, 377 MW from NTPCs Jhajjar plant is also available which can be requisitioned by the state.

During the election days, UP did procure 277 MW from NTPCs Jhajjar plant from May 3 -14, 2014. In addition to these sources, UP can also procure adequate power from the power exchanges to meet its shortage. The poor power situation in UP seems to be a making of the state. If the government there has the will, normalcy could be restored soon, said a source in the power ministry.