Odisha to purchase power at higher rates

Bhubaneswar, Oct 21 (IANS) In a bid to overcome the ongoing power crisis in Odisha, the state government has sought permission from the Odisha Electricity Regulatory Commission (OERC) to purchase power from captive generating plants (CGPs) at a higher rate.

The state power utility, Grid Corporation of Odisha (Gridco), sought approval from OERC to purchase power from the CGPs at Rs.3.20 per unit, said Gridco director (commercial) P.K. Pradhan.

Pradhan said though OERC has stipulated a price of Rs.2.75 per unit, the companies were asking for Rs.3.20 per unit that is likely to burden the state exchequer.

However, OERC seems to be reluctant to give permission to purchase power at a higher rate that would ultimately be an extra burden on consumers.

“The rate is yet to be finalized. We will sit together to fix the price. We would also get electricity through power-banking from other states,” said Pradhan.

He said many CGPs, including Jindal Steel and Power Ltd, Bhushan Steel Ltd, Jindal Stainless Ltd, Aditya Aluminium, Navabharat Power Ltd, and other small CGP units are interested in selling power to the state government.

Official sources said purchase of power would cost the state exchequer about Rs.300 crore.

He said they are now generating extra power from hydropower projects to meet the power demand in the state.

The peak hour demand is around 4,100 MW and the state is facing a shortage of 500 MW, sources said.

With the state government resorting to power cut, the Congress has decided to hold ‘Bijuli Satyagrah’ during the second fortnight of November this year, said Odisha Congress president Prasad Harichandan.

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