SC allows NTPC to re-tender cooling tower order

Written by Indu Bhan | Indu Bhan | New Delhi | Updated: Jan 30 2013, 09:07am hrs
The Supreme Court on Tuesday permitted the countrys largest power producer NTPC to re-tender a part of its R5,000-crore order for a cooling tower at its Nabinagar plant.

The 4 x 250 mw thermal power project, coming up in Bihar's Aurangabad district, is a joint venture (JV) between NTPC subsidiary Bhartiya Rail Bijlee and Indian Railways. Bhartiya Rail Bijlee holds 74% stake in the JV, while the rest is held by Indian Railways.

A bench headed by chief Justice Altamas Kabir, after taking into consideration an affidavit filed by the JV, dismissed Paharpur Cooling Towerss appeal saying it had no locus to challenge the awarding of the R100-crore tender to Lanco Infratech.

Attorney general GE Vahanvati and senior counsel Vikas Singh, appearing for Bhartiya Rail Bijlee and NTPC, respectively, had submitted that they dont want to continue with the tender as they would prefer a different technology for the cooling tower project.

Earlier, the court had in September 2011 stayed the part of the tender relating to setting up of a cooling tower for the power project.

Paharpur Cooling had alleged that it was wrongly eliminated from the tender for induced draft cooling tower for which bids were invited in August 2008. Earlier, the Delhi High Court had also dismissed Paharpur's petition.

Paharpurs senior counsel Mukul Rohatagi said NTPC awarded the tender in violation of the terms and conditions of the tender agreement.