BUSINESS

100 days agenda: power ministry targets 5,653 MW capacity addition

Special Correspondent

Special Advisory Group to be set up to monitor projects: Shinde

NEW DELHI: Acknowledging that the 78,000 MW capacity addition target for the XI Plan was a difficult task, Union Power Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde on Tuesday said the Government had decided to give a major thrust to this sector and had targeted addition of 5,653 MW of power generation in its 100-days.

Addressing a meeting of State Power Ministers here, Mr. Shinde also announced the setting up of a Special Advisory Group (SAG) under his leadership to monitor the capacity addition and implementation of various power projects. The group will consist of experts, retired secretaries and one nominee each from FICCI, CII and BHEL.

Periodic review

The Central Electricity Authority (CEA) and Power Project Monitoring Panel (PPMP) would identify bottlenecks in timely completion of the ongoing projects and apprise the advisory group of the progress. Based on these reports, the group will meet periodically to review the progress, make field visits, if necessary, and advise the Ministry for remedial action. The Power Ministry has added a meagre 15,000 MW capacity out of the targeted 78,700 MW during the XI Plan. “With proper planning and time-bound implementation, we can achieve the target. The task before us is difficult since the XI Plan target of capacity addition is more than three times the actual capacity addition during the X Plan,” Mr. Shinde said.

It was also decided the focus should be on the flagship rural electrification scheme, Rajiv Gandhi Grameen Vidyutikaran Yojana (RGGVY), reduction of transmission and distribution losses and aggregate technical and commercial losses. “

Terming power as an essential input for sustaining an annual growth rate of 8-10 per cent, the Power Minister said that quality power supply to farmers, industries, households and other consumers at reasonable prices is one of the main priorities of the Government. He said that his ministry has taken several initiatives to fulfil the mission of providing power to all by 2012. About 200 delegates, including Lt Governor, Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Chief Ministers of Puducherry, Power Ministers and Power Secretaries of various States and the representatives of Central and State power utilities attended the meeting.