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  India   All India  25 Dec 2016  Parliamentary panel junks claims on power sector achievements

Parliamentary panel junks claims on power sector achievements

Published : Dec 25, 2016, 3:34 am IST
Updated : Dec 25, 2016, 4:47 am IST

Parliamentary body led by BJP MP says that target was overachieved due to pvt sector.

Indian Parliament (Photo: PTI)
 Indian Parliament (Photo: PTI)

New Delhi: Punching holes in the Centre’s claims that it has overachieved the capacity addition target in the power sector for the 12th Plan period by adding around 88,928.2MW as against the target of 88,537MW till October 31, 2016, a high level Parliamentary panel has noted that the overall target is being achieved due to ‘over-achievement’ of targets assigned to the private sector for the entire Plan period.

In its report, the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Energy, which, incidentally, is led by BJP MP Virendra Kumar, has noted that the share of capacity addition assigned to the state-owned entities was a meagre 26,182MW, out of which it was to able to achieve only 14,692MW, a poor 56 per cent till March 31, 2016.

The panel has made its observations on the basis to the capacity addition figures provided to it by the power ministry for the period till March 31, 2016. It presented its report to Parliament on December 15, which was the penultimate day of the Winter Session.

The ministry in its year ending review for 2016 has claimed that during the 12th Plan period, the capacity addition of about 88,928.2MW was achieved against the actual target of 88,537MW from conventional sources, till October 31, 2016.

The Parliamentary panel has struck down the Centre’s claim that though the Centrally-owned entities may have fallen short of the targets for the 12th Plan period (2012-2017), the overall target of 88,537MW is going to be achieved, by observing that it “is not acceptable”. The Centre made this claim before the committee on the basis of the figures available till March 2016.

The panel took into cognisance the figures till March 2016, according to which out of the 88,537MW of capacity addition target of the 12th Plan, 84,990MW had already been achieved, i.e. 96 per cent. However, the private sector had over-achieved its target by adding 49,807MW, whereas its target was 46,825MW, by that time itself. This was an over-achievement of 106 per cent.

“The overall target is being achieved due to over-achievement of targets by the private sector,” the committee said in its observations. It has cautioned the Centre at the same time that generation capacity addition should not be left entirely to the private sector, and its endeavour should be to make the state-owned power entities match the performance of their private counterparts.

It in fact has expressed surprise that the government “has fixed a small target of 26,182MW (of capacity addition) for the Central sector for the 12th Plan, which incidentally also includes 21,654 MW of slipped projects of the previous 11th Plan”. “Despite this, the Central sector has so far achieved only half of what has been assigned in the 12th Plan. Their financial performance re-garding internal and extra budgetary resources has also been poor so far in this Plan period,” said the panel.

The panel has also countered the Centre’s claim that the electricity energy shortage in the country has reduced to 0.7 per cent during the current year 2016-17 (up to October, 2016) from 8.7 per cent during the year 2012-13 (as mentioned in its year ending review for 2016).

It has said in its observations that this could largely be attributed to the massive generation capacity addition. (However) the private sector has contributed significantly in this huge capacity addition, it noted.

In fact that Parliamentary panel has expressed concern that falling energy deficit is also emanating from low demand, as many power stations are running at far below their optimum plant load factor (PLF).

It has noted with distress the fact that the fall in demand by state utilities is due to their inability to purchase electricity at a price being offered by generation companies, which is way beyond their reach, thus highlighting the poor financial health of these state power entities.

Tags: centre, parliamentary panel, virendra kumar
Location: India, Delhi, New Delhi