Solar power project allotted in 2013, to be executed now


Jammu, October 28: The solar power projects which were to be made functional within a period of three to six months, as per the ruling in Union Government’s Solar Power Policy established in 2013 are in disarray till date. After the efforts made by former NC and Congress coalition government, a project of 100 mw Solar Photovoltaic Power Plant was allotted to M/s Then India Energy Private Limited in Kathua District but no progress has been made till yet.

Now, the execution of project approved two years ago has been started on the directions of Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed.

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As reported in a local daily, NC-Congress Government headed by then Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on April 9, 2013 got the project approved by the Chairman, Project Approval Committee who was the then Commissioner/Secretary to Government, Science and Technology Department at 300 acres of land in Kathua. The estimated cost of the project was 950 crore rupees. The project was allotted to of M/s Then India Energy Private Limited, Chennai.

While approving the project, Chairman Project Approval Committee gave it six months time for commissioning of the power project but the guidelines were not followed by the then government and as a result of which the project remained pending.

The project has now been taken over by the present PDP-BJP coalition government and the Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed has shot off on 31-7-2015 vide No. FC/PRS/HC/M/05 advising the Principal Secretary, Power Development Department  to address the issues hindering the execution of project highlighted by M/s Then Energy India Limited.

The Chief Minister who presumably seems keen to improve the power scenario in the state has also directed the Principal Secretary to take all necessary measures to set up first Solar Power Plant project in the state as soon as possible.

According to the letter signed by Deputy Director (P) from the Chief Minister’s Secretariat, the delay in execution of the proposed project was made because of the Power Development Department as it did not sign the Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with the department.

Acting swiftly on the Chief Minister’s letter, Officer on Special Duty (OSD) to Deputy Chief Minister, Dr Nirmal Singh, Incharge Power and Development Department, had written to the Principal Secretary PDD on 6-8-2015 i.e. within six days of the CM’s letter inviting his attention to the letter written by the CM’s Secretariat and asking him to facilitate signing of PPA with the developer at the rates issued by State Electricity Regulatory Commission (SERC) so that 100 mw Solar Power Project, a first of its kind in the State, comes up without any further delay.

As per reports, the Chief Minister has also directed the Science and Technology Department to develop a similar 100 mw Solar Power Project in Kashmir Valley also.

(Representational image)