Despite Prime Minister Narendra Modi backing the Japan-funded Delhi Mumbai Industrial Corridor Development Corporation (DMICDC), a gas-based power plant, proposed to be set up by Toshiba Corporation for an industrial park in Manesar, Haryana, continues to face all manner of troubles for five years now.
Though Haryana is one of the DMICDC states, the Toshiba proposal has been challenged in the court by the state’s electricity utility.
Another DMICDC project — a desalination plant in the 1,700-acre Dahej SEZ in Gujarat — also continues to remain stuck over payment terms. While the Japanese firm Hitachi wants a take-or-pay contract, the state has not yet agreed to this.
In 2010, Toshiba came to India as the leader of a Japanese consortium companies to develop India’s first ‘eco-city’— an environment-friendly and sustainable city.
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An MoU was signed between DMICDC, Toshiba and the Haryana State Industrial and Infrastructure Development Corporation. The idea was to supply green power to the 1,000+ units in Manesar – while the region has 200MW of power capacity right now, demand is expected to be around 400MW in another five years.
In July 2013, Toshiba got a partly favourable order from the Haryana Electricity Regulatory Commission to generate and supply power. This was, however, challenged at the Appellate Tribunal for Electricity (Aptel) by Dakshin Haryana Biji Vitaran and Haryana Vidyut Prasaran Nigam. Aptel last heard the matter on February 4, and the next hearing is on March 26.
In its petition to the Haryana regulator, Toshiba had argued that since industries at Manesar were facing acute power shortage, it be allowed to generate power through gas-based micro-grids. These grids, it said, would be interconnected to ensure completely stable power supply to industries.
While the Haryana regulator had said a generating company had the freedom to establish, operate and maintain a dedicated transmission line to supply power to consumers, the question before Aptel is ‘whether Toshiba needs a distribution licence to supply power to industrial consumers from its generating plant through its dedicated transmission lines as per the provisions of the Electricity Act, 2013’.
The Haryana regulator had said Toshiba would have to pay the cross-subsidy surcharge to the distribution licensees as well as an additional surcharge under the rules framed by the regulator. It also said consumers getting electricity from the dedicated transmission line could not distribute this to other consumers.