Single-window facility to be set up for land acquisition
Decisions at a high-level meeting convened by Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan on the progress of work on the proposed LNG terminal brighten the prospects for a 1,200-mW gas-based power generation plant on Puthuvype Island, close to the proposed LNG receiving and re-gasification facilities within the Special Economic Zone.
The meeting, in the State capital on Wednesday, decided to set up a single-window facility for acquisition of land for laying pipeline from Kochi to Mangalore and Kayamkulam. The post of a Deputy Collector would also be created specially to speed up the land acquisition process.
It was decided that a meeting would be convened soon in Kochi on the proposal from PLL for setting up a power-generation facility. The proposal ran into trouble after a dispute over the ownership of a 40-hectare plot that the Cochin Port Trust identified as suitable for setting up the power generation unit.
PLL expressed its desire to the set up the power generation facility on a plot of land close to the LNG terminal itself. PLL authorities said that that they would require about 40 hectares of land for setting up the power generation unit.
PLL had even bid for 9.5 hectares of land for which the Cochin Port Trust had called for bids. However, the bids were later cancelled.
Officials of PLL said here in April this year that their efforts to get the land allotted for the project had failed and this had weakened the chances of a power generation facility, similar to the one set up by the company at the Dahej LNG facility in Gujarat.
The Dahej facility, coming upon a 50-hectare plot, is projected to cost around Rs.3,500 crore. The cost of the Kochi project would be in the same range. The detailed feasibility report on the Dahej power project was expected to come before the PLL Board in October this year.
Meanwhile, the Cochin Port Trust authorities have expressed optimism that the confusion over the land allocation would be sorted out soon.