With total outstanding dues of the Uttar Pradesh Power Corporation (UPPCL) soaring to more than Rs 10,500 crore, state-owned power generation company NTPC has threatened to cut supplies to the distribution company from Friday if the bills are not cleared soon.
The UPPCL’s cumulative dues, pending for more than 60 days, currently stand at Rs 1,160 crore. If immediate arrangements are not made, the state could lose 5,512 megawatt (MW) of power supply from several NTPC power plants, including Dadri, Kahalgaon, Farakka, Rihand and Singrauli.
As per the regulation notice sent to UPPCL by the NTPC on August 12, the dues have been pending in spite of “repeated follow-ups at various levels in person as well as through letters”. The state’s “overdues” — pending receivables of around 60 days or more — to all power generators from which it sources electricity were at Rs 1,689 crore at the end of June.
The overall power demand in Uttar Pradesh is around 21,116 MW, and NTPC curtailing supply implies the state losing around a quarter of its power source.
As FE recently reported, to insulate renewable energy-based power producers from the vagaries of irregular payments, the state’s electricity regulator has directed UPPCL to deposit Rs 7,244.7 crore in the renewable purchase obligation regulatory fund by January 2022 to pay solar, wind and hydro power producers supplying electricity to the state. The deposit includes Rs 1,459.3 crore, which is to be paid by UPPCL for not meeting its RPO targets till FY21.
Discom “overdues” to power producers at June-end stood at Rs 91,579 crore, down 9.1% from a year earlier in the same period, reflecting the utilisation of the PFC-REC loans under the Rs 1.25-lakh-crore liquidity infusion scheme announced by the Centre under the Atmanirbhar Bharat package to clear discom dues to electricity generators. Around Rs 77,000 crore had been disbursed to the states under the scheme in the first tranche. After dipping in March after receiving funds under the liquidity scheme, the overdues to power plants have been gradually on the rise.