Assuring power project developers, including States, that none of their projects in the implementation stage would suffer for want of coal, Union Minister for Power M. Veerappa Moily said on Friday he had convened a meeting of Union Coal Minister, Coal Secretary and other officials in Delhi on October 16 to sort out issues related to providing coal linkage for power projects.
He also announced that the Centre would soon bring out a policy for granting coal linkage to power projects.
Addressing the press on the sidelines of a programme organised by the Power Grid Corporation of India Limited (PGCIL) here to lay the foundation for setting up a power transmission line between Raichur and Solapur, Mr. Moily said: “The last time that either any coal linkage was provided or a meeting was held in this regard was in April 2009. Now we are going to resume granting of coal linkage to power projects. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh himself has intervened in the matter to solve the problems related to coal allocation to power projects. I have also held a round of consultations with various authorities concerned in this regard,” he noted.
The Minister said the State sector projects would get the highest priority while providing coal linkage. But private projects would also be considered if they were serious, he said.
“I want to tell all the project developers, including the State and Central sectors, that none of their power projects — barring those requiring gas — would suffer due to non- availability of fuel,” he said while pointing out that projects with a total capacity of about 92,000 MW were under various stages of implementation.
Pilot project in Puducherry
The Minister said the PGCIL had taken up a pilot project for improving the power supply situation in Puducherry through information technology, namely smart grid project. The PGCIL was ready to take up a similar project in Karnataka also if the State showed interest, he added.
Later addressing a public function organised to mark the foundation-laying ceremony for the Raichur-Solapur power transmission line, Karnataka Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar appealed to Mr. Moily to help fight power shortage in the State by increasing the allocation from unallocated share of the Central generating stations.
Karnataka Energy Minister Shobha Karandlaje sought to remind Mr. Moily that several State projects were languishing due to the delay in granting coal linkage by the Centre.