J&K faces major power crisis
JAMMU, Feb 11: In what could spell serious trouble on electricity front in Jammu and Kashmir especially when the winter was at its peak in the entire State, the National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) today asked the State Government to clear Rs 1985 crore worth due or face blackout by February 19.
A warning to this effect by the NTPC was issued today and came at a time when entire Jammu and Kashmir especially the Kashmir and Ladakh regions were reeling under extreme cold with temperature dipping to minus in several areas and already there was power crisis in many parts of the State including Doda and Kishtwar.
A notice issued by the NTPC to Jammu and Kashmir Government said it will regulate power supply to the State for not clearing Rs 1,985 crore dues and asked the State to either clear the pending dues or face blackout.
The NTPC notice pointed out that out of Rs 1985 crore, Rs 1626 crore dues are outstanding for last more than 60 days and were required to be cleared urgently.
Jammu and Kashmir can lose power supply of 939.03 Mega Watts from NTPC’s plants including Dadri, Koldam, Farakka, Auraiya, Rohiand and Unchahar if the dues were not cleared by the State Government, sources said.
NTPC has been supplying around 940 mw of power to Jammu and Kashmir from various power stations.
“For more than two years now the payment from Jammu and Kashmir has been irregular and as on date the outstanding dues of NTPC have reached a staggering Rs 1985 crore,” sources disclosed.
They said Jammu & Kashmir’s electricity demand is around 1,950 MW.
The NTPC has been following up at various levels with Power Development Department of the State for realization of payments. “However, there has been no significant improvement in payment position,” they added.
The NTPC notice said the power supply to Jammu and Kashmir would be regulated from 00:00 hours of February 19.
“In case of outstanding dues or in case the required letter of credit or any other agreed payment security mechanism is maintained as per the agreement, the generating company may serve a notice for regulation of power supply on the defaulting entity, for reducing the drawl schedule,” the NTPC said.
Sources confirmed that Jammu and Kashmir could be in for major trouble following the NTPC notice. However, they said, the authorities were confident that the issues would be resolved as there was week’s time in the NTPC notice and by then the State Government could make some payment to get un-interrupted supply from the NTPC.
The NTPC had last week issued similar notices to Telengana, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh. According to three separate notices issued to the power distribution companies, nearly Rs 4,138 crore is due for over 60 days and as per the power regulator CERC’s guidelines, the generators can serve notice for regulation of power to defaulters.
In the notices, the NTPC had asked the States to pay the total amount. These dues include bills pending for supply of solar as well as thermal power by NTPC.
NTPC has cited the CERC guidelines on regulation of power supply.
It said: “In case of outstanding dues or in case the required letter of credit or any other agreed payment security mechanism is not maintained as per the agreement, the generating company may serve a notice for regulation of power supply on the defaulting entity, for reducing the drawl schedule.”