‘Government should direct HNPCL to stop construction of its power plant'
The district unit of CPI (M) on Saturday asked the State Government to order a judicial probe into alleged irregularities committed in the allotment of land to Hinduja National Power Corporation Limited (HNPCL).
Reacting to the findings made in the latest report released by the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG), CPI (M) district secretary Ch. Narsinga Rao, city secretary B. Ganga Rao, and Hinduja Nirvasitula Samkhema Sangham secretary N. Somi Naidu said in view of the adverse remarks by CAG, a constitutional authority, the government should direct HNPCL to stop construction for its 1,040 MW power plant at Palavalasa near here.
Mr. Narsinga Rao said the CAG had confirmed their charge that the land allotment was a big scandal. He said the report had observed that the allotment of Wakf land was in violation of Section 51 of Wakf Board Act, 1995. The Section says Wakf land shall be sold only through open auction.
The CPI (M) leader said impropriety was committed by handing over the land as the Hinduja Group had paid only Rs.16.63 crore as advance instead of the full amount for the land sought by it at Palavalasa in the mid-1990 at the rate of Rs.2.25 lakh per acre.
He said after its failure to achieve financial closure, the project was deemed to have closed. The company was supposed to complete the project work within 44 months of signing agreement with the government. The CAG report also stated that a clause should have been included to sell power to the State Government on par with the tariff charged by NTPC. Mr. Rao said the management of HNPCL had violated the existing laws by undertaking construction in coastal regulation zone (CRZ) area and reiterated his party's demand for a fresh environmental clearance after holding public hearing. The revalidation of old environmental clearance was against the letter and spirit of environmental protection laws.