Staff Reporter

GUNTUR: Andhra Pradesh will need another 3.12 million units of power to supply to farmers by March 2009, thereby putting an additional burden of 12.38 MW adding to 900 MW.

The distribution companies are mainly looking for completion of the 500 MW projects each at VTPS and Bhoopalapalli by March 2009.

During the current fiscal, the State government fixed a quota of 50,000 free farm connections and 1 lakh paid Tatkal connections till March 2009 for which the four distribution companies have to supply an additional 3.12 million units.

In the Southern Power Distribution Company Limited of Andhra Pradesh, the availability is only 1,300 MW against a demand of 2,000 MW.

Deficit in all districts

Guntur Superintending Engineer R. Bapaih has said that for every district under the SPDCL jurisdiction, there is a deficit of about 100 MW. There are six districts under its jurisdiction. The demand was lower by 60 MW in Guntur on Sunday and against a normal of 453 these days, it had drawn only 373.9 MW. Power to the farm sector is being given in two spells in three phases and if the total came down during day time, it is being compensated in the night schedule, he adds.

Guntur district had a quota of 1,000 free connections to be given during this year and 3,150 under the Tatkal.

All eyes are on the gas supply from Reliance off-shore rigging for gas reserves, but since all the six rigs available in the world for taking up drilling operations for the reserves 2,000 feet below surface, are engaged elsewhere, the operation could not be started and is likely to begin as soon as one of them arrived, according to sources.

While some power is being produced using Naphtha at Lanco facility, it is very costly affair.

If the gas supply from Reliance begins, generation units -- Vemagiri, Konaseema, BSES, GVK and Lanco -- will start fully providing a major relief to the State.