Power ministry sets up task force to restructure APDRP

Mumbai, March 30 | Updated: Mar 31 2006, 05:30am hrs
While the Planning Commission proposes, the power ministry disposes. Learning from past experiences, the power ministry has preferred to hold consultations with states to restructure the accelerated power development and reform programme (APDRP) instead of releasing it after deliberations with the Planning Commission. The ministry may allocate the funds under the APDRP directly to utilities instead of routing it through state governments to avoid delays.

The ministry has formed a task force chaired by former power secretary P Abraham to examine the issues related to APDRP including its achievements and short comings, problems of implementation and offer suggestions for its improvement. It has asked the task force to submit its report within three months.

Sources said the Planning Commission had expressed its desire to prepare an action plan for restructuring APDRP in consultation with the power ministry. The ministrys move to involve states and other stakeholders is crucial as it came under severe attack from various states on the draft tariff policy prepared in association with Crisil. Subsequently, the ministry had to amend its draft and hold talks with states before making the final draft.

Planning Commission deputy chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia on March 19 had announced that the Centre was in the midst of restructuring APDRP.

The power ministry sources told FE The task force, which comprises representatives of state utilities and regulatory commissions, will hold a series of consultations with states and other stakeholders before preparing its report.

Under APDRP, 583 projects costing Rs 19,182.33 crore have been sanctioned and an amount of Rs 5,934.34 crore was released under the investment component besides Rs 3,700.27 crore under the loan component provided by financial institutions. Nearly Rs 1,516.64 crore have been released under the incentive component. So far 28 projects have been completed and more than 50% work has been completed in 200 projects.