Clear the confusion on power front

Clear the confusion on power front
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Clear the confusion on power front

Highlights

Why can’t our political executive come out with facts on the real ground situation and explain to the people as to what kind of support it expects from them since a massive power crisis is looming large across the country, and a situation has arisen where compulsory power shutdown or emergency load relief has become inevitable?

Why can't our political executive come out with facts on the real ground situation and explain to the people as to what kind of support it expects from them since a massive power crisis is looming large across the country, and a situation has arisen where compulsory power shutdown or emergency load relief has become inevitable?

The government does not seem to be reposing faith in the people of the country, though they have demonstrated how supporting they can be in overcoming a crisis during the Corona pandemic.

Over half of the country's 135 coal-fired power plants, which meet around 70 per cent of the nation's electricity, have fuel stocks of less than two days. Several states, including Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Gujarat, Punjab, Rajasthan, Delhi and Tamil Nadu have raised concerns over blackouts. Punjab has already imposed rotational load shedding at several places due to the severe coal shortage at thermal power plants. The plants are left with coal stocks of up to five days. Rajasthan is resorting to one-hour power cuts on a daily basis.

Andhra Pradesh has been meeting the grid demand of about 185-190 mega units (MU) daily. Power generation stations operated by APGenco, which supply about 45 per cent of the state's energy needs, hardly have coal stocks for 1 or 2 days. In Delhi, Tata Power Distribution Ltd (TPDDL) has warned that they may have to go in for rotational power cuts as the coal stocks may not last for more than one or two days.

Contrary to the ground realities, the Union government seems to be still maintaining that all is well, and that a panic situation was created due to miscommunication. Agreed, but then what is the correct communication? Why is there miscommunication?

Just a couple of days back, the Union Minister for Power, R K Singh, said that it was a touch-and-go situation. If you have 40,000-50,000 MW of thermal capacity with less than three days of stock, you can't be secure. Was that miscommunication or what he stated on Sunday that panic was unnecessarily created about coal shortage due to miscommunication from GAIL and Tata? The country has four days of coal reserves. Which statement is correct – country having four days reserve or three days reserve? Which is miscommunication?

Why can't the government clearly state, yes, the global chain supply has been hit by shipping delays and many other reasons such as heavy rains in coal and lignite mine areas of Gujarat, Punjab, Rajasthan, Delhi and Tamil Nadu, inadequate built-up of coal stocks before monsoon season and reduction in power generation from imported coal which fell by 40 per cent, which resulted in additional demand of about 18 MT of domestic coal, and other issues such as payment dues by some coal mining companies?

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