Power push by Kiran
Nod for 15 pvt thermal projects Permissions given sans public hearing in some cases Vociferous protests by people's organisations ignored In...
Nod for 15 pvt thermal projects
- Permissions given sans public hearing in some cases
- Vociferous protests by people's organisations ignored
- In a few years, AP to have a total of 40,000 MW capacity
- Politicians, realtors seen behind many projects l GVK Energy with 5,280 MW to be second only to Genco
Patan Afzal Babu
Hyderabad: Even as several people's organisations strongly opposed establishment of thermal power projects in private sector on various grounds, the State government gave its nod for 15 new thermal power projects of private companies. All files including those for land acquisition and infrastructure development were cleared in one go. The total installed capacity of the new projects is about 24,120 MW which is higher than the present total installed capacity 16,000 MW in the State. The total investment involved in the 15 projects is about Rs 80,000 crore.
A majority of the companies have been permitted to construct the projects without holding public hearing. Officials said that eight of the 15 projects are coming up in Krishnapatnam area alone in Nellore district, as the port will facilitate import of coal for the plants. Acting with alacrity on the instructions from Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy, land acquisition process has been taken up and all issues thereof are resolved in no time. People's organisations have been opposing the projects over acquisition of agricultural lands from farmers. Interestingly, most of the private power generation companies are directly or indirectly owned by influential political leaders and real estate developers.
For instance, Simhapuri Energy Limited was a subsidiary of Madhucon Construction owned by senior TDP leader and MP N Nageshwara Rao. Meenakshi Energy Limited is set up by Meenakshi Developers owned by realtor and Central Minister Kavuri Sambasiva Rao. The company has taken up real estate ventures in Hyderabad and Bangaluru. Navabharat Power Limited is floated by Navabharat Ferro Alloys Limited owned by P Vara Prasad. He is facing charges in Coalgate scam and has also been grilled by the Enforcement Directorate (ED).
Nelcast Energy Corporation is floated by Nagarjuna Construction Company (NCC) owned by A V S Raju. Thermal Power Tech is a brain-child of senior Congress leader and MP T Subbarami Reddy. NSL Andhra Power Limited is owned by Nagarjuna Group. GVK Energy , owned by businessman GVK Reddy, succeeded in getting permission to establish power projects with a capacity of 5,280 MW at six different locations in the state. It has emerged as the largest power generation company after APGenco in the State.
The Genco officials said that the private generation companies have assured the government that they will offer power to the State at a reasonable price. Once the projects are completed, the total installed capacity in the state will be increased to 40,000 MW in the next few years from the present 15,000 MW, they added.
The 15 projects
1,320 MW East Coast Energy (Srikakulam); 1,320 MW Alfa Infraprop (Vizianagaram); 600 MW Simhapuri Energy (Nellore); 2,320 MW Meenakshi, 1,980 MW Thermal Power Tech, 2,860 MW Krishnapatnam Power Corporation and 1,980 MW Kineta Power (all in Krishnapatnam area, Nellore); 1,320 MW Nelcast Energy Corporation (Nellore); 300 MW Navabharat Energy and 300 MW Coastal Projects (both in Khammam district); 1,600 MW NSL Andhra Power (Krishna district); 1,320 MW Srinivasam Electric Power (Visakhapatnam); 1,320 MW Weispun Energy, 300 MW MSR India (both in Prakasam district); and 5,280 MW GVK Energy Ventures at six locations in the State.