Amit Shah meets Coal minister, others amid concerns over coal shortage, blackout in several states

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Updated: October 11, 2021 3:18 PM

Several states have warned of a power outage in the wake of a severe coal shortage, but the coal ministry has asserted that sufficient dry fuel is available in the country.

Several states have warned of a power outage in the wake of a severe coal shortage, but the coal ministry has asserted that sufficient dry fuel is available in the country.

Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Monday met Coal and Powers Minister Pralhad Joshi and other colleagues amid concerns over a possible power outage in several parts of the country due to inadequate supplies of coal. The meeting was also attended by senior bureaucrats as well as officials from the state-run energy conglomerate NTPC Limited.

Several states have warned of a power outage in the wake of a severe coal shortage, but the coal ministry has asserted that sufficient dry fuel is available in the country to meet the demand of electricity generating plants and has dismissed as “entirely misplaced” any fear of disruption in power supply.

In a statement on Sunday, the Ministry of Coal said that the current fuel stock at coal-powered plants is about 7.2 million tons, sufficient for four days.

Government-owned mining giant Coal India also has a stock of more than 40 million tons which is being supplied to power stations. “Any fear of disruption in power supply is entirely misplaced,” the ministry said.

The clarification came a day after Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal warned of a looming power crisis in the national capital due to inadequate coal supplies.

The Congress has blamed the government for the coal shortage in the country and expressed fear that power rates may be increased now after the hike in petrol prices. Former Union Minister Jairam Ramesh demanded an investigation into the coal shortage.

Targeting the prime minister, Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala alleged it is a “Modi made power crisis” for the benefit of his “friends”.

“Dear countrymen, be ready. After petrol, the prices of electricity will prove costly to your pockets. There is an acute shortage of coal availability and the electricity act has also been amended. “After the amendment, ‘Saheb and his friends’ can now charge their own rates for each unit of power and sell it at higher rates,” Surjewala said in a tweet in Hindi.

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