Special Correspondent

Revanna submits six-point agenda for consideration

  • Centre appealed to set up a 1,600 MW thermal plant in State
  • Tax benefits for new power projects sought

    NEW DELHI: The Karnataka Government has sought more assistance from the Union Government for the growth of the power sector in the State in the context of assessments by consultants that the demand for power could go up to 10,460 MW by 2011-12, marking a gap of 2,000 MW as against the present capacity available in the State grid of 8,460 MW.

    In a speech delivered at the conference of Power Ministers convened by the Union Power Ministry, Minister for Energy H.D. Revanna submitted a six-point agenda for the consideration of the Centre.

    In particular, he appealed to the Centre to set up a 1,600 MW thermal plant, extend tax benefits for new power projects to provide a level-playing field for State producers vis-a-vis Central and large private producers, nominate Central PSUs for each gas-based power projects, and speed up allotment of coal blocks, with provision of long-term coal linkages.

    "Our gas-based Bidadi project is yet to take off due to non-availability of gas at competitive prices," the Minister said.

    There was, he said, also a need to direct the BHEL to ensure timely supply of equipment and to increase the grants under the Rajiv Gandhi Grameen Vidyutkaran Yojana, the Centrally-sponsored rural energy programme, since the cost of inputs like steel, cement, copper, and aluminium had gone up.

    In the speech, which was read out by Labour Minister Iqbal Ansari as Mr. Revanna could not attend the conference, the Minister said the State Government was looking at a capacity addition of at least 6,000 MW over the next five years, involving an investment of about Rs. 20,000 crore.