Tangedco owes ₹21,399 crore to power generators

Central power generating stations raise some queries on liquidation scheme submitted by the Tangedco

Published - July 30, 2022 02:23 pm IST - CHENNAI:

High voltage power transmission lines in Chennai. File.

High voltage power transmission lines in Chennai. File. | Photo Credit: S. Thanthoni

Tamil Nadu’s power distribution utility Tangedco owes a total of ₹21,399 crore to Central power generating stations, independent power producers and renewable energy generators as on July 12. 

Meanwhile, some central power generating stations have raised some issues about the liquidation scheme submitted by Tangedco for settlement of dues.

Union Minister of Power and New and Renewable Energy R.K. Singh shared data from Praapti portal on the outstanding dues of distribution companies in a written reply in the Lok Sabha on Thursday.

As per the data, Tangedco owes ₹7,908 crore to Central power generating stations, ₹10,663 crore to independent power producers and ₹2,828 crore to renewable energy generators.

Responding to a question about dues of distribution companies, Mr. Singh pointed out that the Centre has brought a scheme to enable distribution companies to clear their legacy dues existing as on June 3, 2022.

As per the scheme, distribution companies will be given one-time relaxation wherein the outstanding amount, including the principal and late payment surcharge, will be frozen without further imposition of further surcharge. The discoms are given the flexibility to pay the outstanding amount in up to 48 instalments.

Late payment surcharge is levied on the payment outstanding by a discom to a generating company at the base rate (pegged to SBI’s Marginal Cost of Lending Rate). It is applicable for the period of default at base rate for the first month of default and increases by 0.5% for every successive month of delay, subject to a maximum of 3% over base rate at any time.

Tamil Nadu is expected to save over ₹4,500 crore from the scheme.

At a recent meeting of the Commercial Sub-Committee of Southern Regional Power Committee (SRPC), under the Central Electricity Authority, the Kundankulam Nuclear Power Project (KKNPP) pointed out that a monthly bill of around ₹300 crore was being billed to Tangedco, but no payment was being received.

It also pointed out that around 88% of the total outstanding dues of ₹3,261 crore was pending and the last payment received from Tangedco was in the month of March 2022. The Tangedco said it has opted for the Centre’s scheme. However, the KKNPP said even after rescheduling the dues, Tangedco has to settle the monthly bills raised.

The SRPC also clarified that the Centre’s scheme deals only with the outstanding dues up to the date of the notification, which is 03.06.2022 and subsequent monthly bills raised shall be settled by the distribution companies as usual.

NLC Tamil Nadu Power Limited (NTPL) and NLC India pointed out that Tangedco, as per the Centre’s scheme, has rescheduled the total outstanding dues including late payment surcharge payable to all generating companies, transmission licensees, electricity trading licensees etc.

As per the scheme proposed by Tangedco, the generator would recover its outstanding dues over a period of 48 months irrespective of the quantum of outstanding dues. The outstanding dues of a generating company of even less than ₹1 crore would be paid in 48 months.

However, the NTPL and NLC said as per scheme said the outstanding dues with respect to individual generating company / transmission licensee shall be considered for rescheduling the dues.

The SRPC said Tangedco’s interpretation of including electricity trading licensees might be correct. However it suggested the generators seek clarification from the Union Ministry of Power.

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