Centre sends bid doc, UPPCL expedites discom privatisation

By: |
September 25, 2020 5:00 AM

Talking to FE on condition of anonymity, an official said that work on preparing the tender document is on and bidding is likely to start by mid-October.

In separate letters to directors of UPPCL – commercial, distribution and finance – the UPPCL MD has asked them to provide information of commercial, technical and financial parameters of the six zones of the discom.In separate letters to directors of UPPCL – commercial, distribution and finance – the UPPCL MD has asked them to provide information of commercial, technical and financial parameters of the six zones of the discom.

Going full throttle on its plan of privatising the Purvanchal Vidyut Vitran Nigam (PuVVNL) or Varanasi discom, which consists of major eastern UP cities, the Uttar Pradesh Power Corporation (UPPCL) has initiated data collection exercise from all the 6 electricity zones of the discom – Gorakhpur, Basti, Prayagraj, Mirzapur, Varanasi and Azamgarh – in order to work out the assets and liabilities as on March 31.

The move is in line with the Centre’s thrust on accelerating private sector participation in power distribution utilities across the country and comes in the backdrop of the Centre issuing the standard bidding document a couple of days ago. It lays down the guidelines to follow for inviting the technical and financial bids, the terms and conditions for the participants as well as the timelines to be followed.

The data sought include details of various technical, commercial and financial parameters of PuVVNL for FY 2019-20 and for FY 2020-21 as on August 30, 2020.

PuVVNL represents 23.60% of UPPCL’s total energy, 29.28% of the total consumers and 19.79% of UPPCL’s total revenue. Of the 83,78,492 consumers in PuVVNL, 84.05% ae rural consumers and 15.95% are urban consumers and the discom’s AT&C losses stand at a whopping 41.12%, while its line losses are to the tune of 19.20%.

According to senior officials of UPPCL, efforts are on to complete the bid process of the discom by November and hand it over to the selected private company by year-end.

In a letter to the MD of PuVVNL, MD of UPPCL M Devraj has asked for reports of completed projects of all the six zones which are now in commercial utilisation so that fixed asset register can be updated for FY 2019-20 and for duration of April to August in FY 2020-21.

In separate letters to directors of UPPCL – commercial, distribution and finance – the UPPCL MD has asked them to provide information of commercial, technical and financial parameters of the six zones of the discom.

While the director commercial has been asked to provide the number of consumers for each category, government connection details, monthly input energy and monthly billed energy etc, the director finance has been asked to provide details such as fixed asset register as on March 31, 2020, additions in the fixed asset register during April to August, inventory value, scheme-wise loans and their status of balance etc. The director distribution has been asked to provide details of technical parameters of PuVVNL. They include the number of 33/11 KV substations, feeders, transformers, store inventory, work in progress, details of faulty transformers and repairs carried out in 2019-20 etc.

Talking to FE on condition of anonymity, an official said that work on preparing the tender document is on and bidding is likely to start by mid-October.

It may be mentioned that the UPPCL had given its in-principle approval for the proposed unbundling of PuVVNL in June itself. The Varanasi discom happens to be the worst performing discom in the state and has a large rural consumer base. It covers Prime Minister Modi’s parliamentary constituency Varanasi as well chief minister Yogi Adityanath’s constituency Gorakhpur.

Meanwhile, power employees have been protesting against the move and have threatened to go on a “historic struggle”.

“It’s a do or die situation for us and we are ready to go on a lightening strike” said Shailendra Dubey, convenor of UP Vidyut Karmachari Sanyukt Sangharsh Samiti.

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