Power Minister Piyush Goyal today lambasted the Karnataka government for not giving right of way for power transmission projects, saying that if the way had been given the Southern Grid capacity could have been expanded four times within five years. Southern Grid transmission capacity, he said, was enhanced 89 per cent in the last three years due to which states can draw power round the clock. “I have committed to further double this capacity in the next 3 years. We would have expanded the capacity of Southern Grid four times five years…one project got delayed. We are not getting right of way, particularly in Karanataka.,” Goyal told the media here.He said Karnataka, being strategically located, “I cannot take new transmission lines to Tamil Nadu and other Southern states (without passing through Karnataka). It is important that all states should give right of way”. He also informed that during the ongoing summer season, states are not finding it difficult to buy power from exchanges because there is an improvement in transmission network and they were able to buy power for not more than Rs 3.5 per unit at exchanges. The Performance Report of Power Ministry states that the transmission network in the country had increased by 40 per cent to 7.4 lakh MVA in March this year, from 5.3 lakh MVA in March 2014.
Power transmission lines have also increased from 2.9 lakh CKM to 3.7 lakh CKM during the period. The report also says that transmission projects worth Rs 1.5 lakh crore were commissioned during 2014-17, which is 83 per cent higher than those commissioned in 2011-14. Besides there was not a single disturbance occurred since May 2014, it added.