By Bizodisha Bureau, Bhubaneswar, September 14, 2018: The Odisha government has requested the union power ministry to swap it with power sourced from the NTPC- central power utility’s plants located inside the state to save at least Rs 500 crore per annum for the next 25 years.

The state minister for energy, Sushant Singh in a letter to union minister for power and renewable energy, R K Singh said, “Odisha has been allocated high-cost NTPC power from neighbouring states such as Barh-I (418 Mw) and Barh-II (166 Mw) which is likely to cost more than Rs 5 per unit, leading to high retail tariffs for consumers. We have been requesting Ministry of Power for surrender of this expensive power and its swapping with NTPC power from Kaniha and Talcher”.

Odisha wants de-allocate costly power from NTPC projects where power sourcing costs exceed Rs 5 per unit, pressuring the retail tariffs for consumers.

Singh said, an enormous financial burden of Rs 12000 crore on the power consumers could be averted if the state government’ suggestion is accepted.

The minister mentioned about the next stage expansion of NTPC’s Talcher Thermal Power Station (TTPS) saying that the state government had been actively assisting all NTPC projects from land acquisition to forestry and environment clearance and power evacuation.

“The TTPS has also been similarly facilitated by the Odisha government as a result of which several statutory clearances could be obtained by NTPC. The chief secretary has also reviewed the progress of the project in a meeting held on July 28, 2018 wherein senior officials of NTPC were also present, he said in the letter.

Incidentally, two days back, union minister Dharmendra Pradhan criticized the Odisha government for not approving the TTPS expansion. “Unfortunately, NTPC is still awaiting approval of the HLC (High Level Committee) despite applying online for single window clearance on April 19, 2017. Lack of requisite clearance for such big ticket projects even after a lapse of more than 15 months will dampen the investment climate in Odisha and send a wrong signal to the investor community”, Pradhan said in a letter to chief minister Naveen Patnaik.

“The tariff of power indicated by NTPC for the first year of operations is in the range of Rs 3.40 per unit which is much higher than Rs 2.70 per unit included in the review meeting held by the chief secretary. NTPC may also confirm the evacuation of power from TTPS through state transmission network so that Odisha is not subject to payment of very high transmission charges of PGCIL which are likely in the range of Rs 0.60 to Rs 0.80 per unit when the plant becomes operational, Singh stated in his letter.

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