National Hydroelectric Power Corporation Ltd. (NHPC)

Background

National Hydroelectric Power Corporation Limited (NHPC), A Govt. of India Enterprise, was set up on 7th November 1975 with an authorized share capital Rs 2 billion. In its existence for 34 years, NHPC has grown to be the largest organization for hydropower development in India with capabilities to undertake all the activities from conceptualization to commissioning including operation and maintenance of hydropower projects. Later on NHPC expanded its objects to include other sources of energy like Geothermal, Tidal, Wind etc.

At present, NHPC is a Schedule 'A' Enterprise of the Government of India with an authorized share capital of Rs 150 billion. With an investment base exceeding Rs 254 billion. NHPC is a profit making company and among the TOP TEN companies of the country in terms of investment. NHPC has been granted ISO-9001 & ISO-14001 certificates for its Quality Management system and Environment Management system for corporate office.

Initially, on incorporation, NHPC took over the execution of Salal Stage-I, Bairasiul and Loktak Hydro-electric Projects from Central Hydroelectric Project Construction and Control Board. Since then, it has executed 13 power stations with an installed capacity of 6075 MW on ownership basis including projects taken up in joint venture. NHPC has also executed 5 projects with an installed capacity of 89.35 MW on turnkey basis. Two of these projects have been commissioned in neighbouring countries i.e. Nepal and Bhutan.

Presently NHPC is engaged in the construction of 11 projects aggregating to a total installed capacity of 5132 MW. NHPC has added 1970 MW during the 10th Plan period and plans to add 5332 MW during 11th Plan period. About 20 projects of 15166 MW capacity are awaiting clearances/Govt. approval for their implementation.

Profile of NHPC

Projects Completed

13 Nos. (6075 MW)

Projects Under Construction

11 Nos. (5132 MW)

Projects Awaiting Clearances

20 Nos. (15166 MW)

Joint Venture Projects

3 Nos. (2420 MW)

Projects on Turnkey Basis

5 Nos. (89.35 MW)

In 2008-2009
Energy Generated (Including Deemed Generation) 16690 Million Units
Capacity Index 93.61%
Sales Turnover Rs. 2,562 crore (provisional)
Net Profit Rs.1,050 crore (provisional)
Performance Rating Very Good
In 2007-2008
Energy Generated (Including Deemed Generation) 14813 Million Units
Capacity Index --
Sales Turnover Rs. 2,301 Crores
Net Profit Rs. 1,004 Crores
Performance Rating --

In 2006-2007

Energy Generated (Including Deemed Generation)

13048.76 MU

Capacity Index

94.11%

Sales Turnover

19630 Million

Net Profit

9248 Million

Performance Rating

"Excellent" (Expected)

In 2005-2006

Energy Generated (Including Deemed Generation)

12567.15 MU

Capacity Index

98.16%

Sales Turnover

17140 Million

Net Profit

7427 Million

Performance Rating

"Excellent"

In 2004-2005

Energy Generated (Including Deemed Generation)

11286.43 MU

Capacity Index

95.28 %

Net Profit

6845.8 Million

Performance Rating

"Excellent"

In 2003-2004

Energy Generated (Including Deemed Generation)

11045.52MU

Capacity Index

96.82%

Sales Turnover

14140 Million

Net Profit

6213.8 Million

Performance Rating

"Excellent"

 

Generation

Sales v/s Profit

During the period 2006-2007 , NHPC had a sales turnover of 19630 Million with a Net Profit of 9248 Million.

The expertise available with NHPC has been tapped for setting up of Hydroelectric projects in neighboring countries. The 14.1 MW Devighat Project was completed by NHPC in 1984 in record time of three and half years. NHPC has also completed the Nuwakot Rural Electrification project in Nepal covering electrification of 64 villages along with substation and connected lines one year ahead of schedule. The corporation has recently completed works in Kurichu & Kalpong Projects ahead of scheduled including Gelephu-Tintibi-Nanglam transmission line in Bhutan.

Financial Information

Net-worth (1995-96 to 2006-07)

Gross fixed assets (1995-96 to 2006-07)

Net Sales v/s Value Added (2002-03 to 2006-07)

Audited Financial Results for last 10 years

FINANCIAL

2006-07

2005-06

2004-05

2003-04

2002-03

2001-02

2000-01

1999-00

1998-99

1997-98

Sales *

17541

16141

14499

12761

11723

12210

11799

10757

11944

9930

Miscellaneous income @

4333

3595

3938

5517

3029

3304

5757

2026

391

44

Profit before interest, depreciation & Tax $

16100

14547

14389

14773

11534

11835

12097

10707

9992

8491

Profit after interest & depreciation

10877

8122

7775

6435

5550

5131

4842

4012

3053

2994

Profit after interest & depreciation and tax

9248

7427

6846

6214

5105

4709

4434

4012

3053

2994

Dividend

2780

2230

1400

1200

750

500

300

150

150

150

Reserves & surplus (cumulative)

53670

47099

41685

33385

28524

25985

21391

16906

12721

9486

 

Assets

2006-07

2005-06

2004-05

2003-04

2002-03

2001-02

2000-01

1999-00

1998-99

1997-98

Gross Fixed Assets

129436

127555

108763

103427

82809

81135

78927

77527

70904

69036

Depreciation

28509

25278

21482

18829

16722

15267

12801

10290

8111

5986

Net Fixed Assets

100927

102277

87281

84598

66087

65868

66126

67237

62793

63050

Capital Work in progress

113999

88442

87872

69758

70780

57438

43238

27686

25760

20731

Construction Stores & Advances

8564

7789

7701

8055

6217

5255

6130

5115

3228

3320

Investments

33227

38328

37694

34625

25379

19272

6799

-

-

-

Net Current Assets

-3456

-2253

1387

1078

17675

15500

18642

21009

14718

12525

Misc. Expenditure not w/o.

258

245

12

7

12

20

98

19

4

17

253520

234828

221947

200105

186151

158098

134903

121066

106503

99643

Liabilities

Net Worth

- Share Capital

112070

105761

99333

86290

72406

63457

51882

44462

38250

33930

- Reserves

53670

47099

41685

33385

28524

25985

21391

16906

12721

9486

Income received in advance on account of advance against depreciation

12459

10302

10712

9394

8010

6484

5199

3861

2455

1305

Borrowings

75319

71667

70218

68478

75078

62172

56431

55837

53077

54922

253520 234828 221947 200105 186151 158098

134903

121066

106503

99643

 

OPERATING PERFORMANCE

2006-07

2005-06

2004-05

2003-04

2002-03

2001-02

2000-01

1999-00

1998-99

1997-98

Generation (M.U)

13049

12567

11286

11046

9863

8912

8774

8691

9917

8816

Machine availability(%)

94.11

98.16

95.30

96.82

96.62

96.86

92.09

91.05

88.39

83.00

Sales(Rs. in crores)

1754

1614

1450

1276

1172

1221

1180

1076

1194

993

Man power (Nos.)

12768

13118

13470

13648

13017

13054

11850

12150

11860

11799

* Sales are net after tariff adjustment and advance against depreciation

@ Includes receipts against contracts

$ After prior period adjustments

Top

Latest News Items. (Click for More)
Leh, Kargil finally plug in to national power grid 1/17/2019 12:00:00 AM
 
  • More than 70 years after Independence, an engineering feat by state-run transmission utility PowerGrid has made it possible for India’s northernmost areas in Jammu & Kashmir to plug into the national electricity network to bring ‘one-nation-one-grid’ closer to reality.

  • On Saturday, PowerGrid and Jammu and Kashmir power department switched on the Alusteng-Alunday stretch of the 350-kilometre Srinagar-Kargil-Leh transmission line tracing some of the world’s highest mountain ranges and inhospitable terrains separating the Kashmir Valley from the frontier districts of Ladakh and Kargil. Sources told TOI power flowed for four hours through the 220-Kv (kilo-volt) line and its four sub-stations connecting Leh with the northern grid at Alusteng near Srinagar.

  • "This is a milestone for our country. We have now connected our northernmost areas to the national grid. It is a milestone for the people of Ladakh and Kargil. Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid the foundation stone on August 12, 2014 and it was commissioned during this government’s tenure. This is commitment to people’s welfare," power minister RK Singh told TOI.

  • The project is expected to dramatically improve the quality of life with 24X7 power supply in the strategically important region, which sees long and harsh winters with temperatures dipping to 50 degrees below freezing. Assured power supply is expected to energise economic activity and employment through winter tourism. Environment will get respite from millions of litres of diesel that is burnt by the defence and civil establishments to run generators.

  • Leh and Kargil towns have been getting power since 2013 from two NHPC hydel projects, built at a combined cost of nearly Rs 2,000 crore at Nimmoo-Bazgo and Chutak, respectively. Built as part of India’s strategy to exploit the potential of Indus before it enters Pakistan, the hydel stations were running at sub-optimal levels in the absence of grid connectivity. The Srinagar line will allow the stations to run at full capacity, feeding surplus power into the northern grid during summer and draw 100-150 MW in winter when reduced flow impedes generation.

  • In the long term, the line will help Ladakh-Kargil region emerge as India’s power house by allowing evacuation of power from proposed solar projects with aggregate capacity of 7.5 GW (giga watt).

  • Due to their isolated locations, Ladakh and Kargil have remained 95 per cent power deficit regions. Habitations, including district headquarters Leh and Kargil, till recently received five hours of power supply in the evening from diesel generators and a few micro hydel projects.



 
Govt regularises pay scales of 5,254 executives of hydro power PSUs 1/17/2019 12:00:00 AM
 
  • The Union Cabinet on Wednesday gave its approval for regularisation of pay scales of 5,254 executives in four state-run hydro power companies -- NHPC, NEEPCO, THDC India and SJVNL. Giving details of the decision, Union Minister Piyush Goyal said Rs 323 crore will be incurred for regularisation of the pay scales.

  • Anomalies existed in the pay scales of executives of the four PSUs since January 1997 due to revision of pay scales of unionised category of workmen/non-executives in line with the NTPC/oil sector within the organisations.

  • The pay scales of workmen and supervisors were higher than the pay scales of executives in the E-1 grade.

  • After the approval, the pay scales adopted by the hydro unit consequent upon the order of the power ministry dated April 4, 2006 and September 1, 2006 would be regularised.

  • About 5,254 below Board level executives the power units enrolled before January 1, 2007 will benefit by this approval.



 
Leh, Kargil finally plug in to national power grid 1/16/2019 12:00:00 AM
 
  • More than 70 years after Independence, an engineering feat by state-run transmission utility PowerGrid has made it possible for India’s northernmost areas in Jammu & Kashmir to plug into the national electricity network to bring ‘one-nation-one-grid’ closer to reality.

  • On Saturday, PowerGrid and Jammu and Kashmir power department switched on the Alusteng-Alunday stretch of the 350-kilometre Srinagar-KargilLeh transmission line tracing some of the world’s highest mountain ranges and inhospitable terrains separating the Kashmir Valley from the frontier districts of Ladakh and Kargil. Sources told TOI power flowed for four hours through the 220-Kv (kilo-volt) line and its four sub-stations connecting Leh with the northern grid at Alusteng near Srinagar.

  • "This is a milestone for our country. We have now connected our northernmost areas to the national grid. It is a milestone for the people of Ladakh and Kargil. Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid the foundation stone on August 12, 2014 and it was commissioned during this government’s tenure. This is commitment to people’s welfare," power minister RK Singh told TOI.

  • The project is expected to dramatically improve the quality of life with 24X7 power supply in the strategically important region, which sees long and harsh winters with temperatures dipping to 50 degrees below freezing. Assured power supply is expected to energise economic activity and employment through winter tourism.

  • Environment will get respite from millions of litres of diesel that is burnt by the defence and civil establishments to run generators. Leh and Kargil towns have been getting power since 2013 from two NHPC hydel projects, built at a combined cost of nearly Rs 2,000 crore at Nimmoo-Bazgo and Chutak, respectively. Built as part of India’s strategy to exploit the potential of Indus before it enters Pakistan, the hydel stations were running at sub-optimal levels in the absence of grid connectivity. The Srinagar line will allow the stations to run at full capacity, feeding surplus power into the northern grid during summer and draw 100-150 MW in winter when reduced flow impedes generation.

  • In the long term, the line will help Ladakh-Kargil region emerge as India’s power house by allowing evacuation of power from proposed solar projects with aggregate capacity of 7.5 GW (giga watt). Due to their isolated locations, Ladakh and Kargil have remained 95% power deficit regions.

  • Habitations, including district headquarters Leh and Kargil, till recently received five hours of power supply in the evening from diesel generators and a few micro hydel projects.



 
Discoms' outstanding dues to power generators rise 24percent to Rs 39,498 cr 1/14/2019 12:00:00 AM
 
  • Amid stress in the power sector, woes of electricity generating firms have increased further as their outstanding dues on state distribution companies (discoms) rose to Rs 39,498 crore in October 2018, up 24.7 per cent from a year-ago levels, official data showed. "If the outstanding dues on discoms of the past 60 days get added, the figures would rise to over Rs 50,000 crore," a senior official of a thermal power company said.

  • In October 2017, the discoms' dues to power-producing companies stood at Rs 31,676 crore, the data available on the PRAA (Payment Ratification And Analysis in Power Procurement for Bringing Transparency in Invoicing of Generators) website showed.

  • The website was launched by the government in May last year to bring transparency in payments.

  • Discoms of Uttar Pradesh (UP), Maharashtra, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Delhi and Tamil Nadu owe the major portion of dues to the power generating companies and take over 514 days or about 1 year and 4 months to make payments, the portal showed.

  • While UP tops the list with 537 days in making payments, Delhi takes 519 days and is followed by Maharashtra (518 days), Karnataka (517 days), Rajasthan (516 days), Tamil Nadu (515 days), Telangana (514 days) and Andhra Pradesh (514 days).

  • Outstandings of public sector thermal power companies amount to over 55 per cent of the total dues of Rs 39,498 crore on discoms. This includes outstanding of NTPC at Rs 15,661.31 crore, NHPC at Rs 3,011.67 crore and Damodar Valley Corporation at Rs 1990.59 crore.

  • Discoms owe the most to Adani Power at Rs 6,878.94 crore, Bajaj Group-owned Lalitpur Power Generation Company Ltd at Rs 1,861 crore, GMR at Rs 1630.40 and Sembcorp Energy at Rs 1,712.32 crore among the private generators.

  • Senior officials of thermal power generation firms said: "Such staggering levels of unpaid bills have left private sector companies worried. While the issue of 30,000 MW stressed assets are yet to be resolved, this alarming level of unpaid bills have started impacting cashflows of many companies."

  • Citing reports, they added that recently Lalitpur Power Generation Company faced issues in paying salaries to its nearly 3,000 staff and meeting their operations and maintenance requirements.

  • The officials added that accepting the recommendations of the Cabinet Secretary P K Sinha-headed High Level Empowered Committee would lead to resolving most of the issues of the power sector, particularly the bill discounting mechanism that has the potential to resolve the issue of unpaid bills forever.

  • The Sinha Committee had recommended that public finance institutions (PFIs), such as REC and PFC, may discount the receivables from discoms and make an upfront payment to the generators. Against that, the PFIs will realise their dues from the discoms in due course of time and charge interest for the period of delay in payment by the discoms.

  • In the case of a default by discoms, the PFIs be covered with a tripartite agreement with the Reserve Bank of India and the states, where the RBI can deduct the money directly from the accounts of a state and pay the financial institution.

  • The officials said NTPC has a similar mechanism with the states and the RBI against default by a discom and therefore, the discoms and states should not have any issue in accepting the recommendations on the bill discounting mechanism.

  • The government has constituted a Group of Ministers headed by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley to vet the recommendations of the Sinha Committee.



 
OPINION: Power sector finally looking up, rapid demand growth spells opportunity 1/7/2019 12:00:00 AM
 
  • India’s power sector is undergoing a noteworthy change, and this has redefined the industry outlook. Demand for electricity is seeing a steady growth with a pick-up in the economy, especially manufacturing activity, as well as favorable government policy. The government has implemented various progressive measures to maximise power generation capacity and improve distribution.

  • India has made great steps in raising access to electricity; as more than 13 crore people joined the power grid since 2013. Also, a close look at the index of electricity showed it has been growing considerably in core sector data. Per capita electricity consumption, which was a mere 16.3 units in 1947, has increased to 1,122 units in 2016-17.

  • Below in the graphical representation of the various index in the core sector.

  • Government initiatives like 24x7 power, power to all households by March 2019 and UDAY, which has improved viability of discoms to buy more power to serve more customers and the CEC initiatives that include linking of deviation settlement mechanism (DSM) prices to DAM prices at the exchange average clearing price, have helped the sector witness robust growth.

  • In 2018, power demand has increased 8 per cent to 177GW. However, the coal supply chain has tightened up. On the contrary, coal-based power generation capacity in India, which currently stands at 190.29GW is expected to reach 330-441 GW by 2040.

  • Meanwhile, the government is hopeful of higher output next year from already allocated mines and plans to further allot 10 mines to Coal India. The government targets to increase renewable capacity to 175GW in FY22, and further to 275GW in FY27 from current 72 GW.

  • Moreover, the railway ministry has also decided to electrify its entire broadgauge network. In order to achieve this target, India needs to add more renewable capacity, improve fuel-supply chain for coal and gas plants and efficient utilization of existing capacity. Total installed capacity of power stations in India stood at 346.62 GW as of November 2018.

  • Electricity demand in the country has increased rapidly and is expected to rise further in the years to come. Electrification is increasing with the support of the government schemes like DDUGJY (Deendayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Yojana) and IPDS (Integrated Power Development Scheme). The government has also delicensed the electrical machinery industry and allowed 100 per cent foreign direct investment (FDI) in the sector.

  • India’s power sector is forecast to attract investments worth Rs 11.56 trillion between 2017 and 2022 in thermal, hydro, nuclear and renewable segments.

  • In order to further boost the sector, there is an urgent requirement for reforms relating to prioritising efficient coal allocation and delivery, promoting competition in coal and electricity supply, rationalising energy prices and using incentives to promote more efficient power generation and delivery.

  • Besides, other reforms already proposed such as re-designing of real-time market, ancillary services regulations and linking of DSM prices with exchanges prices, if implemented, will help absorb more renewable in the grid going forward.

  • India’s rapid growth over the past decade has increased power demand, which is still largely unmet. With the robust outlook of the sector, it is expected that India will see foreign participation in the development and financing of generation and transmission assets, engineering services, equipment supply and technology partnership in nuclear and clean coal technologies going forward. Going forward, NTPC, NHPC, PTC India, Torrent power and Adani Power are some of the stocks that may give good returns.



 
Making 624 MW Kiru project commercially viable 1/7/2019 12:00:00 AM
 
  • To make the prestigious Kiru 624 MW Hydro Electric Project on River Chenab in Kishtwar district commercially viable, the State Administrative Council (SAC) accorded series of exemptions to it.

  • The proposal for granting of such exemptions, otherwise much required for this ambitious joint venture loaded with contributing very significantly towards attaining self sufficiency in power by Jammu and Kashmir State, was thoroughly examined by various departments and purely on feasible operational grounds and decided that instead of exemption of 12 percent free power for first ten years of the COD of the project as was done on similar lines in case of Pakal Dul HEP, free power will be exempted in decrement(al) manner for the first five years of commercial operation of the project. Accordingly, it will be restoring to 12 percent from the sixth year.

  • The project, it may be recalled was planned as back as in the year 2007 and after a few hurdles, the project was in the year 2011 entrusted to Chenab Valley Power Projects Pvt Limited, a joint venture amongst NHPC Ltd, J & K State Power Development Corporation Ltd, and Power Trading Corporation of India Ltd. Anyway, travelling all the way and overcoming humps mainly like environment clearance, the project was duly appraised by Central Electricity Authority in its meeting in January 2016.

  • Since a large chunk of forest land was required for the project in addition to other Government and private land, compensatory afforestation was going to be started and fully executed by J& K Forest Department under Compensatory Afforestation Fund Management and Planning Authority (CAMPA). In other words, the project is envisioned as an eco- friendly enterprise.

  • However, the break-up of this free power is in the first year exemption of 10 percent, in the second at 8 percent, 6 percent in the third 4 and 2 percent each in 5th and the 6th year respectively of the commercial operation of the project. Not only will the project cater to the increasing demand of the power in the State but would prove to be a well earning entity as it is estimated that nearly Rs. 4200 crores worth of revenues, the State would be earning on account of incremental free power for first five years and 12 percent from 6th year onwards and Rs. 4800 crores on account of water usage charges, aggregating to Rs. 8954 crores for the remaining life of 25 years of the project. Tariff of the project shall be approximately Rs.3.38 per unit during the first year and Rs.3.91 per unit as a flat rate.

  • We have been, for nearly two and a half decades, getting assurances after assurances towards attainment of self sufficiency in power generation and bridging the gulf between the demand and the supply of power and the project is loaded with much hopes towards that important end. No doubt, many small and big projects were conceived, planned and made to generate power but the fact is that we have not made much headway but this project being much ambitious would lead towards self sufficiency in power. This project is a run-of-river scheme project with an underground power house with four Tail Race Tunnels as also with four units of 156 MW each which would generate annual energy of 2364 MUs and is next only to Pakal Dul Hydroelectric Project.



 
UT to bridge power supply gap with 760 crore purchase 1/2/2019 12:00:00 AM
 
  • UT electricity department plans to spend Rs 760 crore on power purchase to bridge the demand and supply gap. This was submitted

  • by the department in the multi year tariff (MYT) petition submitted before the Joint Electricity Regulatory Commission (JERC).

  • As per the petition, UT will spend money on power purchase from Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) and from short-term sources like power exchange, solar energy from Chandigarh Renewable Energy, Science and Technology Promotion Society (CREST), and other power plants.

  • Peak power demand is estimated to reach 404 MW in 2019-20. In 2021-2022, it will increase to 448 megawatts in Chandigarh. Given the high rate of population growth, UT electricity department is already finding it difficult to provide uninterrupted power supply to city residents.

  • The department also plans to improve its power infrastructure. As per official records, there are five 33KV sub-stations and 13 66KV sub-stations across the city. One substation has a life span of 25 years and six 66KV sub-stations have exceeded their life-span. The number of such sub-stations will continue to grow.

  • As per the plan, 12 new 66KV grid sub-stations will be established and all existing 66KV sub-stations will be upgraded in the next 10 years. The overhead transmission line of 2,037 kilometres in the city will be converted into an underground line. The department has set a 10-year deadline to complete the work. Also, there is a plan to install 1,825 new distribution transformers.

  • Electricity department caters to 2.28 lakh consumers in nine

  • categories. As per official figures, of the total consumers, 1.99 lakh are domestic, accounting for more than 87% of the total consumers. The remaining 23% belong to other categories, commercial, small power, medium supply, large supply, bulk supply, public lighting, agriculture power and temporary

  • supply.

  • Chandigarh buys power from Central generating stations such as Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited, National Thermal Power Corporation Limited, Bhakra Beas Management Board, National Hydroelectric Power Corporation (NHPC) and Satluj Jal Vidyut Nigam (SJVN).



 
84percent of 3593 MW Energy Generated from J&K Flows Out Of State 12/28/2018 12:00:00 AM
 
  • Though entire India is not illuminated by energy generated from Jammu & Kashmir as overall energy production in the country is currently well over 334,000(MW), the bulk (84 percent) of 3593 MW of energy generated from Jammu & Kashmir flows outside the state to the northern grid where from J&K buys energy worth over 7000 crores annually.

  • Coming up at a huge environmental cost, the hydro-power projects and a network of transmission lines are not serving Jammu & Kashmir, but the government of India, Kashmiri civil society members say.

  • Environmental degradation, being caused through construction of hydro-power projects and transmission lines is evident even in official documents. For example, construction of the recently completed Samba-Amargarh 1000MW transmission line has incurred quite visible environmental costs in the form of felling of at least 40035 forest trees including Deodar and Kail besides 35322 bushes as per the official documents.

  • Also, thousands of trees outside forests (belonging to farmers and orchardists) have been cut in Shopian, Pulwama, Budgam and Baramulla districts according to RTI activist, Dr. Raja Muzaffar. The project worth 3000 crores, was executed by the Mumbai-based electric transmission development company, Sterlite Power.

  • Muzaffar argues that such government orders and permissions happen to be an eye-wash as permissions are granting on the basis of technical language. For example, in the document of the forest department, it has been mentioned that 40035 trees and poles are involved from which ¡§approximately 9953 trees/poles/saplings are expected to be felled.¡¨ But, Muzaffar claims more than double the ¡§involved¡¨ trees have been felled.What is interesting, is also the quantum of land being approved for such projects through decisions made by Forest Advisory Council (FAC) meetings without highlighting the terms and conditions for such approvals. This writer reviewed at least half a dozen such FAC decisions where highlights of terms and conditions for approvals were not mentioned. ¡§Proposal was approved on the terms and conditions laid down in the agenda,¡¨ this is the standard phrase being used for such approvals. Where can people and environmentalists see those terms and conditions, is not clear. In case of Samba-Amargarh 1000MW transmission line, approval for using 372 hectares of land, and in case of Srinagar (Alastang)-Leh 220Kv transmission line, orders about approval of 150 hectares of land were issued in the similar fashion. Add to this the tree felling in Sindh division as well for laying the transmission line. ¡§Thousands of trees have been axed in Sindh forest division. I almost wept several times while seeing such devastation,¡¨ said a resident of Ganderbal who did not reveal his name.

  • Not manually, but mechanically!

  • Though company (Sterlite) officials had said that the project (Samba-Amargarh 1000MW transmission line) passes through toughest terrains, it was completed two months before the December 2018 deadline. Wildlife officials told this writer on the condition of anonymity that the user agency, while making the most of 2016 unrest in Kashmir, involved huge machinery, instead of the prescribed norms, for laying roads before carrying construction material in heavy trucks and helicranes even inside the Hirpur wildlife sanctuary whose verdant pastures act as habitat for markhor, musk deer and several other species.

  • ¡§So, obviously, they were better placed to complete the work before the deadline,¡¨ an official of Wildlife department said.

  • The permission order, reviewed by this writer, clearly mentions that the user agency will do the work manually and use ponies for carrying material. But wildlife officials told this writer that they saw the user agency people bulldozing the slopes and wildlife habitat to construct a road from the Mughal Road-end to the tower-location for almost all the 50 towers within the sanctuary.

  • ¡§I think these people took advantage of the 2016 uprising and were even allowed by the state and district administration to use bulldozers and carry out blasting operations,¡¨ wildlife researchers told this writer in the backdrop of their conversations with people who dealt with the user agency.

  • Even one of them quoted an official saying this: ¡§I once heard one of the engineers saying that we will violate the rules and then pay 10 times more than we are asked to pay.¡¨ He said that, for them (user agency) to pay for the damage, it is like paying peanuts even if they are asked to pay in crores. ¡§Nothing can restore the damage they have caused,¡¨ he said.

  • Regional Wildlife Warden, Rashid Naqash, said that his department did its best to secure wildlife habitat and objected to the style of work by the user agency several times by stopping the work and issuing notices to them. ¡§We even raised an invoice for the damage they had caused and made them to pay 2.47 crore rupees for mitigating the damage,¡¨ Naqash told this writer.

  • ¡¥Environmental costs for nothing¡¦

  • A prominent economist, Professor Nisar Ali, argues that whether it is the transmission lines or the power projects in Jammu & Kashmir, the people of the state don¡¦t stand to benefit given that the state of Jammu & Kashmir is not in a position to generate hydro-power as it is not allowed to do so.

  • ¡§The crux is that the government of India is raising transmission infrastructure for its network of power projects in the state. It has been proven time and again that government of India is just interested in exploiting the water resources of J&K. Just recall the package of 24,000 crore rupees which was announced by the former prime minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh. As much as 18000 crore of that package was meant for power projects of NHPC,¡¨ Ali said and also referred to the May 2016 statement of union power minister, Piyush Goyal, wherein he had ruled out transfer of two hydro-power projects operated by the National Hydro-power Corporation to Jammu and Kashmir and also denied to increase the power share from NHPC projects from current 12 percent to 25 percent.

  • He said that the state government is not in a position to utilize transmission infrastructure as it cannot build the power projects on its own. ¡§Look at the devastation we are causing to our environment for laying these transmission lines and construction of hydro-power projects. Yet we can¡¦t benefit from them,¡¨ the economist said.

  • According to him, it is because of ¡§the timidity and opportunism of Kashmiri politicians and bureaucrats who are overseeing the plunder of Kashmir¡¦s resources.¡¨

  • The seasoned economist said that power (energy) is now a political issue, but ¡§not for the politicians of Jammu & Kashmir¡¨ as they ¡§act as jokers.¡¨ He said that they silently watch while Jammu & Kashmir¡¦s future is compromised.

  • ¡§This is criminal,¡¨ he said and added that Jammu & Kashmir buys electricity worth 7000 crore rupees annually from government of India and, on top of that, loses 57 percent of that electricity through Aggregate Technical and Commercial (AT&C) losses. ¡§So, wherefrom can it get the resources to utilize the transmission lines by buying more power. They, at best, will be utilized for taking electricity from here for government of India¡¦s use,¡¨ he said.

  • Iftikhar Drabu, a well-known analyst of power sector, echosed the views expressed by Professor Ali with respect to J&K government¡¦s week financial position as regards the utilization of power infrastructure being created in the state at environmental costs. ¡§How can we expect a state, where electricity worth 45,000 crore rupees is stolen and where there is huge lack of infrastructure for buying power, can utiulize the transmission infrastructure?¡¨ Drabu asked.

  • Prominent civil society member and former president of Federation Chamber of Industries Kashmir (FCIK), Syed Shakeel Qalander, said that J&K should be allowed to generate capital through its resources for its economic and energy security.

  • He said that electricity is being produced and taken out of Jammu & Kashmir without caring about the benefits of the state. ¡§If we are making huge sacrifices by compromising on the health of our environmental assets, the benefit should go the people of our state,¡¨ Qalander said. ¡§What is happening instead, is that our resources are being bartered away without making any strong case for our region,¡¨ he said.

  • According to Qalander, Maharaja Hari Singh was more aware about the ecological wealth of J&K than the present-day politicians as he twice refused the diversion of a canal to neighboring Punjab despite the fact that he was offered huge money. ¡§And look at the present-day politicians of our state who run our affairs. We are being looted and they readily act as instruments for that loot,¡¨ Qalander said.



 
HP: Parbati-III power station shut down for maintenance 12/22/2018 12:00:00 AM
 
  • State-run NHPC's 520-MW Parbati-III power station in Himachal Pradesh's Kullu district has been shut down for three months to carry out necessary maintenance, a district official said. The gates of the Siund dam have been lifted since Wednesday night and water will flow without any control for three months, Kullu district magistrate said Friday.

  • Officials as it is a run-of-the-river station the gates have been lifted.

  • Urging the public not to go near Sainj river, the district magistrate said that the water flowing from upper areas would directly reach in Sainj river as its level may increase suddenly.

  • Going near Sainj river for the next three months may prove fatal, he added.

  • Parbati Stage-III power station is a run-of-the-river scheme whose design discharge includes the diversion of tail race releases of Parbati Stage-II power house as well as inflows from river Sainj and Jiwa nullah. The plant was fully commissioned in 2014.



 
NHPC's Rs 600-crore buyback offer to open on January 1 12/21/2018 12:00:00 AM
 
  • State-owned NHPC on Thursday said its offer to buy back 21.42 crore equity shares at Rs 28 apiece, aggregating to Rs 600 crore, will open on January 1.

  • The share repurchase programme will close on January 14, 2019, the hydro power giant said in a regulatory filing.

  • The company proposes to buy back up to 21,42,85,714 equity shares (representing 2.09 per cent of total paid-up equity share capital) at Rs 28 apiece for an aggregate consideration not exceeding Rs 599,99,99,992, the filing said.

  • Shares of the company ended flat at Rs 26.10 on BSE Thursday.

  • Last month, the company's board had approved the buyback offer. The board had fixed November 30 as the record date for the purpose of determining the entitlement and the names of the shareholders eligible to participate in the buyback.

  • NHPC had posted a 19.62 per cent jump in its net profit at Rs 1,218.51 crore in the quarter ended September 30, 2018, compared to Rs 1,018.64 crore a year ago.

  • Its total revenue rose to Rs 2,966.58 crore in the second quarter from Rs 2,490.70 crore a year ago.

  • The company in its Annual General Meeting held on September 27, 2018 approved final dividend of Rs 0.28 per equity share (face value of Rs 10 each), which is in addition to the interim dividend of Rs 1.12, totalling to Rs 1.40 per equity share for 2017-18.



 
Govt may push for 2 more M&As in energy space to meet FY19 disinvestment target 12/11/2018 12:00:00 AM
 
  • Intent on fulfilling its divestment target before FY19-end, the Finance Ministry wants to push through at least two more merger and acquisition deals among government-owned energy companies, after the recent deal between Power Finance Corporation and REC, reported The Economic Times.

  • Senior government officials told the paper that there are plans to make power generation major NTPC a holding company of the energy sector by acquiring three or more state-run companies.

  • First, NTPC will buy the government's 64 percent stake in SJVN, which will raise around Rs 6,500 crore at current valuation. At the same time, NHPC could acquire the North Eastern Electric Power Corporation from the government, an official told the paper.

  • In the plan's next phase, transmission companies like Power Grid Corporation of India (PGCIL) may be brought in with NHPC to create a big power sector behemoth under NTPC, the official added. Smaller central public sector enterprises (CPSEs) like the Damodar Valley Corporation could also be included in this plan.

  • "Essentially, NTPC becomes the holding company, with all these entities under its umbrella, but each company will retain management control," the official told the paper.

  • Of its divestment target of Rs 80,000 crore, the government has only raised Rs 32,997 crore this fiscal. "This is not being done with the sole idea of disinvestment but for creating strong entities that can compete globally," another official said.

  • Last week, the government received the Cabinet's approval to sell its entire 52.63 percent stake in power sector financing company REC to PFC, which is expected to fetch the Centre Rs 14,000 crore.

  • Atanu Chakrabarty, Secretary to the Department of Investment and Public Asset Management (Dipam), recently said he is confident the government will meet its target. "Pawan Hans, for which proposals have been invited, has received substantial competitive interest," he had said.



 
NHPC to acquire 500 MW Lanco Teesta project for around Rs 900 crore 12/7/2018 12:00:00 AM
 
  • State-owned NHPC has bagged debt-laden Lanco's 500 MW Teesta hydro power project under insolvency proceedings for a tentative value of Rs 900 crore, a senior official said.

  • NHPC is expected to complete the takeover in the next three to four months and can finish the project in three to four years as its construction is almost 50 per cent complete, the official added.

  • "NHPC Ltd has emerged as the successful bidder for the 500 MW Lanco Teesta Hydro Power project. NHPC will acquire the project for around Rs 900 crore," the senior company official told PTI.

  • Earlier in the day, NHPC also confirmed the development in a BSE filing.

  • "...NHPC Ltd has been declared as the successful resolution applicant by the committee of creditors of Lanco Teesta Hydro Power Ltd," it said.

  • However, the company said this would be subject to final approval by the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT).

  • Lanco Teesta Hydro Power is building a 500-megawatt (125 MWX4) hydropower project on the Teesta river in Sikkim.

  • As per the procedure, the NCLT would call for objections on the deal before approving it. Once approved by the NCLT, NHPC would seek approval of the Public Investment Board and the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs.

  • The official also said the company would provide bank guarantee of Rs 10 crore to initiate the deal and make the remaining payment after all required approvals.

  • NHPC has installed generation capacity of 7071 MW while 3800 MW is under construction.



 
Hydro power giant NHPC inks pact with SBI for term-loan of INR 500 cr 12/3/2018 12:00:00 AM
 
  • State-owned hydro power giant NHPC Sunday said it has entered into agreement with the country's largest lender State Bank of India for a term-loan of Rs 500 crore.

  • The borrowed fund will be utilised to finance the capital expenditure, NHPC said in a statement.

  • "The loan has tenor of 10 years with 3 years of moratorium period and the rate of interest is linked with one year MCLR (currently at 8.50%)," it added.



 
Why Power cuts increased with the onset of winter in Kashmir 11/28/2018 12:00:00 AM
 
  • Kashmir is a beautiful place which is called paradise in the world. Despite, Having some of the best and the perennial rivers of the world, the valley does not receive enough electricity to meet the needs of people. Since electricity is the basic need of life in to-days world. Kashmir with its ample availability of water resources can become one of the largest electricity producers in the world. Electricity in Kashmir is not sufficient to meet the needs of people. Generation of electricity had a long history in Jammu and Kashmir.

  • The first power project in Jammu And Kashmir State was developed as early as in1905. Its name was Mohra Hydroelectric plant. The estimated Hydel potential in Jammu and Kashmir is more than 2,648.46 MW, of which 17,323200 MW have already been identified. In order to harness this potential in a sustained manner, Government of Jammu and Kashmir established Jammu and Kashmir State Power Development Department Corporation Limited (JKPDCL) which has been incorporated as a Private Limited Company on 16.02.1995.

  • Electricity has been and is a necessity of life. Life seems incomplete without electricity. No work can be done without electricity our mobile phones, heaters, electric blankets etc use electricity for their working. This means every sector of state needs electricity to work efficiently. First of all, electricity was owned by private companies. The government had no role part in the electric sector. The state of Jammu and Kashmir is largely dependent on the power generated from hydropower projects and thermal power plants besides supplements from DG set. Power generation from the state-owned powerhouses is only 2,562.723 million units. A bulk of electricity consumption in the state is by the domestic sector. With modernization and increased urbanization, per capita, energy consumption of the state has increased from 849.98 kWh in 2010-11 to 882.82 kWh in 2011-12. The energy demand has gradually increased during the last five years at an annual rate of 5 to 8 %. According to the Sixteenth All India Power Survey, the power requirement of the state is expected to reach 19,500 million units during 2020-21. The rivers which flow through the state of J&K are perennial. Though the water level can decrease with the onset of winter but cannot decrease in such a way that there should be no electricity for the state.

  • The primary source of energy in rural areas in Jammu and Kashmir is firewood and cow-dung cakes followed by LPG. The total number of villages in J&K state is since as per 2011 census are 6337, of which only 107 villages are Un-electrified. Almost 98.39 % 0f villages are electrified in Jammu and Kashmir but providing electricity with a cheaper rate is difficult. From the data obtained from the website of PDD, the current rate for electricity for Domestic Metered areas is 50 Rupees per Kilowatt hour. The price for non-domestic or commercial metered areas is 62 rupees per kilowatt hour. Since there is a different charge for using electricity for different purposes. The usage also differs from one sector to another. The loss of electricity in the state of Jammu and Kashmir also makes the possibility of providing 24/7 electricity for people impossible. The major drawback about the loss is due to using of wires what are unable to carry their load. Due to this fact, a lot of electricity goes to waste.

  • Another factor which contributes to the shortage of power in the state is lack of maintenance of power supply in state. Currently, there are 22 Hydel power projects in the State, most of the projects are under National Hydro Power Corporation (NHPC) it shares only 13% electricity with J&K state. Rest of the electricity is given to other states of India about 87% of power. At present Total Generation of electricity in Jammu and Kashmir State is 3,210 MW of Hydro Power. The state-owned 21 power projects have the capacity of 1121 MW power, while the seven power projects which are under NHPC have a capacity of above 2000 MW power.

  • Growing Need for electricity

  • Winter season increase the demand of electricity because most of the equipments which people use to keep themselves warm during winter are used in winter like blowers, boilers to make the water hot, electric blankets are in use in winter. In the current scenario, the demand in this winter season had increased more due to severe winter. The mercury in winter goes down to even minus 20 in mountainous areas of Kashmir.

  • Though there is not much shortage of power in the urban areas of the Kashmir, the rural areas of J&K state are severely affected due to lack of electricity.

  • The poles and the wires carrying electricity to our homes have not been revived for several years. Due to this wear and tear by winter season when snow falls all the electricity in the valley is off. When a single raindrop falls or there is a single blow of wind all valley becomes the darkened.

  • Protests against PDD with starting of winter

  • As the winter is about to start in Jammu and Kashmir. The Kashmir valley is experiencing highest cold temperatures these days. At the start of this month a destructive snowfall had destroyed the important transmission lines in Kashmir. Due to this destruction, many in many rural villages the electricity is yet to restore. Most of the hilly and rural areas of valley remain cut off from their respective district headquarters due to which they face the difficulty of electricity.

  • Another aspect of the very bad effect of shutdown of electricity is on the education system of Kashmir. Since the end semester exams are mostly held in the starting of winter in months of November and December. The students find it difficult to prepare for these examinations. They have to prepare for these exams without electricity. Also, snowfall makes their study more difficult, because as the snowfall begins lights are off in the valley. They find it difficult to reach on time in exams and back home.

  • The government should take immediate measures to make the infrastructure of electric poles, wires, transformers and all other equipments which are used in the electricity should be renewed. The first effect would be that the theft of electric power would be decreased in the valley. The loss of electricity which occurs due to old wires would be also decreased.



 
NHPC’s Arunachal Pradesh projects to resume work after NGT move 11/26/2018 12:00:00 AM
 
  • The government expects to resume work on two of the country’s largest hydroelectric projects, planned by the NHPC at Lower Subansiri and Dibang in Arunachal Pradesh with a combined capacity of 4,800 MW, as the green tribunal has quashed appeals stalling them.

  • The government has filed a caveat in the Supreme Court against stay on the two projects without a hearing. However, the organisations opposing the projects are preparing to approach the Supreme Court, according to people aware of the matter.

  • The National Green Tribunal (NGT) on Monday rejected an appeal filed by social activists against the constitution of a three member expert committee to study the 2,000-MW Lower Subansiri hydroelectric project on the border of Assam and Arunachal Pradesh.

  • “This is a very positive development in the hydroelectric sector where no new project has taken off in the last three-four years. With this order, we expect work to resume on the project. The expert panel will hopefully submit its report in the next two-three months,” said a government official.

  • The case was filed in NGT by Assam Public Works and Tularam Gogoi demanding fresh formation of an expert committee with better local representation and limited government intervention. NGT on Monday retained the three-member committee, including Prabhas Pandey, PM Scott and ID Gupta.

  • “We have heard the learned counsel appearing for the applicant. We did not find any merit in these applications,” the tribunal order said. The litigation had stopped work at the project for nearly nine months after the case was filed in the tribunal, which had reserved the matter.

  • In the matter of the 2,800-MW Dibang multipurpose project, the NGT had in its judgement on November 13, dismissed the appeal filed by appellant Pradip Kumar Bhuyan against the government for granting environment clearance to the project. The tribunal upheld the environmental clearance accorded to the project in the lower Dibang valley district.

  • “The court said adequate studies had been undertaken to ensure sustainable implementation of the project. The court, however, has asked the implementing agency to meet all conditions laid down in the environment clearance scrupulously,” said a person aware of the matter. The government official said NHPC will shortly call bids to award turnkey contracts to build a 70-meter high concrete dam on the Dibang river.



 
NHPC board okays share buyback at Rs 28 apiece for Rs 600 crore 11/16/2018 12:00:00 AM
 
  • State-run hydro power giant NHPC's board has approved buyback of 21.42-crore equity shares at Rs 28 apiece, aggregating Rs 600 crore.

  • The board approves the buyback by the company of its fully paid-up equity shares of Rs 10 each not exceeding 21,42,85,714 equity shares (representing 2.09 per cent of the total number of equity shares in the paid-up share capital of the company) at a price of Rs 28 per equity share payable in cash for an aggregate consideration not exceeding Rs 599,99,99,992, a BSE filing said.

  • According to the statement, the board has fixed November 30 as the record date for the purpose of determining the entitlement and the names of the shareholders, who are eligible to participate in the buyback.

  • On Wednesday, NHPC posted a 19.62 per cent jump in its net profit at Rs 1,218.51 crore in the quarter ended September 30, 2018, compared to Rs 1,018.64 crore a year ago.

  • Its total revenue rose to Rs 2,966.58 crore in the second quarter from Rs 2,490.70 crore a year ago.

  • The company in its Annual General Meeting held on September 27, 2018 has approved final dividend of Rs 0.28 per equity share (face value of Rs 10 each) which is in addition to the interim dividend of Rs 1.12 per equity share paid in 2017-18 totalling to Rs 1.40 per equity share for 2017 -18.

  • The NHPC share price was down 3.87 per cent at Rs 26.05 per piece on BSE closing on Thursday.



 
Kashmir's Unending Power Woes 11/15/2018 12:00:00 AM
 
  • Come October-end, the State Administration shifts to Jammu leaving behind the Valley in darkness. Suddenly, you observe power generation has drastically gone down, as if till its move to winter capital the civil secretariat was generating electricity. This year, the situation has worsened too soon. Within days of Chief Secretary assuring people of a change in power scarcity situation this winter, the Valley plunged into complete darkness following a 2-inch deep snowfall. This happened when the top bureaucrat and his comrades in administration had barely reached their warm winter houses in Jammu, 300 kms south of Srinagar. The power supply has been restored but with frequent, long and agonizing cuts, besides several hours’ daily scheduled curtailment.

  • Octogenarian Ghulam Mohammad Bhat from uptown Sonawar is incensed with the early dismal winter power scenario. From the time of his childhood, Bhat recalls, despite tall official claims of ending power scarcity ‘soon’, he has not seen “a winter when power supply had improved over the previous year”. Born in 1931 on a day when Maharaja Hari Singh was blessed with his only son, Karan Singh, Bhat believes the successive governments in Kashmir have miserably failed in building on the edifice of power generation the Dogra Government had laid more than a century ago. The governments, he believes, have only created “elite pockets” whose inhabitants do not face ‘powerlessness’.

  • Long, dark wintery nights haunting people in Kashmir including Srinagar, its capital of 5000 years, is an old story. Most households in the city are now metered but that has changed nothing. The promised uninterrupted power supply to these areas remains an illusion. A south city resident swore by God that ever since digital meters were installed in his colony the power situation has worsened. The situation is agonizing particularly for honest consumers who have either volunteered or readily agreed to have digital meters installed in their houses. Power theft by some consumers may be one of the reasons for load shedding but then not checking the menace reflects badly on the Government itself. One wonders if it is really serious in curbing this nuisance, for one of the former Chief Engineers of PDD lost his post for seizing heaters from a city area and destroying them in full public and media view.

  • Kashmir, it may be recalled, was only second place in the subcontinent, after the State of Mysore, to have a hydropower house as early as in the first decade of 20th century. In 1908, the 4x1000 kva Mohura Power House was commissioned, heralding a new hope in the Valley. The power house lit up ‘thousands of houses in Kashmir besides a small number of mini industrial units like huskers, flour and oil grinders, band saws, and silk reeling, weaving and spinning units’. Sadly, 110 years later, Jammu & Kashmir continues to be a power starved state notwithstanding its huge identified hydropower potential of which only 16% has been exploited so far.

  • Over the decades, the Valleyites have learnt to live with false promises and tall claims of the Government about next winter and next year going to be brighter and J&K turning power-surplus state in coming five to ten years. Generations of youngsters have grown old or traveled into the hereafter in the hope of this dream coming true. If there was an archive of Government propaganda, one would see how on commissioning of each new power project since the start of Ganderbal-I, Governments have given the tidings of ending power shortage. Kashmir, nevertheless, continues to forge ahead in darkness, its power resources being consumed by others, thanks to the monster that NHPC has turned out to be.

  • When it comes to the question of Jammu & Kashmir sustaining itself as an independent country if an option was on the table, its hydropower potential is always cited as one of the important pluses suggesting that the state can supply electricity to whole of south Asia. In real terms, however, the State has not been able to ‘empower’ itself. Not to speak of prioritizing power generation, for the past 71 years we have not been able to even correctly assess our hydropower potential. In 1996, people were told that the State had an identified hydel potential of 10,000 MW [Greater Kashmir, 25 July 1996]. Then, without God Almighty bestowing us any new water source, the figure was raised to few thousand megawatts more. In January 2018, the estimated potential was declared 20,000 MW, of which “16,475 MW have been identified”. Now, ‘a team of researchers’ from University of Kashmir has come forward with an ‘independent assessment’ raising the State’s hydropower potential to over 25,000 MW. This is the same university, and perhaps the same team of researchers, that has been frightening us for the past many years with ‘steady depletion’ of our glaciers and shrinking water sources. Were the experts in the Government so incompetent to not make a correct assessment with all available tools or have our water sources actually increased? The point to emphasize here is that we are not able to even assess our resources, let alone exploit them to the fullest.

  • Kashmir supplying power to south Asia is loud thinking. The reality on the ground is that for 8 out of the 12 months of a year, the State imports power. To meet its 842 MW load consumption Kashmir, as on date, imports 360 MW power from Northern Grid. The story for the summer months is not much different [Ziraat Times, 5 November 2018]. The first and the foremost reason for Jammu & Kashmir to be a power deficient state is bartering away of its vital interests. All local political parties in power have facilitated robbing the State of its political power and economic wealth. After reducing the State’s special position to a brittle skeleton, the focus was shifted to the ruination of its economic strength. Handing over the State’s most vital resource –water- to NHPC is the biggest crime against the people of Jammu & Kashmir they have committed after facilitating dilution of its constitutional special status. The ‘vision’ these politicians have about Kashmir was on full display recently when their newly launched comrade spelt out his priority for malls over wetlands.

  • Jammu & Kashmir is a goose that lays golden eggs for the NHPC. Of the 20 power stations it operates in India with a total installed capacity of 5171.2 MW, including 3721.96 MW from 8 power stations in Jammu & Kashmir alone. In plain terms, 72% of the hydropower produced by NHPC and consumed in different states of India generates in Jammu & Kashmir. In return, the NHPC gives to Jammu & Kashmir free a mere 12% (less than it gives to neighbouring state of Himachal Pradesh) power generated in the State. For rest of its requirement, the State has to buy from the NHPC power generated from its own rivers. The Corporation is working on 7 other hydropower projects (3 are said to have been commissioned) under joint venture in Madya Pradesh, Manipur, Nepal and Jammu & Kashmir, with a total capacity of 3764 MW. These include 3 power houses - 1000 MW Pakuldul, 624 MW Kiru and 540 MW Kawar - with a total generating capacity of 2164 MW (57.49%) in Jammu & Kashmir only. Is it difficult to hazard a guess why the NHPC is not returning to the State the Salal and Uri projects, irrespective of an agreement to this effect, and why it is eager to clinch more such projects from the State? From Salal alone, the Corporation has since earned many times more than its investment. The project should have been returned to the State long back.

  • When some years back a minister in the State Cabinet agitated this issue and demanded return of the Salal project, the copy of the agreement and relevant file were reported to have gone missing from the civil secretariat. In 2012, the State Government informed the Legislative Assembly that Jammu & Kashmir has suffered losses to the tune of Rs. 2350.85 crore which it was examining to recover from the NHPC. It is not for nothing that NHPC has earned in Kashmir the sobriquet of ‘East India Company‘.

  • The Government of India’s refusal to finance major hydel power projects in the state sector in Jammu & Kashmir and the State Government’s willful failure to build the run-of-the-river mini hydel power houses on its rivers and major streams is a double whammy for the State and its people. Ghulam Mohammad Shah as Power Minister of Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah, had visited China to study the mini hydel power houses for building a strong power generation system back home. On his return, the Government had described mini hydel power houses as an answer to the State’s chronic power crisis. Unfortunately, the matter rests there.

  • Jammu & Kashmir will have to assert its water rights, get back Salal and Uri and renegotiate with NHPC its share of free power from the J&K based power stations, and royalty on water usage. It also needs to prioritize building of mini hydel projects – 2-4 under each Five Year Plan- without looking for illusive Central Government investment. To begin with, it could possibly dispense with MLA local area development fund scheme and channelize this huge money for generating power through small hydel projects.



 
Discoms’ dues to IPPs cross Rs 36,260 crore, delayed payments for power sold are adding to the woes of stressed projects 11/15/2018 12:00:00 AM
 
  • Even as stressed assets with a combined capacity of 32 gigawatts are on the verge of insolvency — another 7-gigawatt capacity is already undergoing the insolvency process at the National Company Law Tribunal — these power companies are finding it hard to recover dues from procuring states in time.

  • According to data available with the power ministry’s ‘praapti’ portal, the state-run discoms owed 10 generators ù seven private and three state-owned — Rs 26,500 crore as of August-end. Of this, Rs 17,760 crore is due to independent power producers (IPPs), Rs 4,340 crore to state-owned NTPC and the balance to firms like NHPC, DVC, SJVNL etc.

  • If the so-called regulatory dues of Rs 18,500 crore is included, the outstanding amounts by the discoms to IPPs alone would be a staggering Rs 36,260 crore.

  • Generators are privileged to report payment defaults of more than 60 days to the government on a voluntary basis.

  • The total payment defaulted by discoms, according to industry sources, could be even higher as several producers haven’t reported the outstanding amounts. Major companies like Tata Power, Adani Power and GMR Energy, among many others, for instance, haven’t uploaded the latest status of discoms’ unpaid dues to them.

  • While the stressed IPPs and the state-run generators are left high and dry by discoms, the latter have shown sharper reductions in their financial losses. The discoms had posted an annual reduction of Rs 17,352 crore (50%) in their losses by the end of March 2018, under the Ujwal Discom Assurance Yojana (UDAY) scheme. Had the payments to the gencos been made in time, the picture would have been less rosy for discoms.

  • Majority of the outstanding is for five states — Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Haryana, Tamil Nadu and Uttar Pradesh.

  • The power companies are facing difficulty in recovering the dues from discoms at a time when the Supreme Court is hearing a batch of petitions against a Reserve Bank of India (RBI) circular that makes it mandatory for lenders to take firms to the insolvency arena in case they failed to come out with a resolution plan within six months after first (a day’s) default.

  • After including the power units before NCLT and those under the threat of getting dragged to these tribunals shortly, the stressed power projects are worth over Rs 2.5 lakh crore.

  • In a recent letter to Cabinet secretary Pradeep Kumar Sinha, the Association of Power Producers wrote: “… It is impossible for any developer to keep his assets in bank’s ‘standard’ category, in an eco system which stipulates default even if there is just one day’s delay in payment of interest or principal (sic); and all payments for inputs are to be made in advance (coal/evacuation of coal), while at the same time the output payments are delayed beyond 6 months and are progressively increasing — this amount has shown an increase of 40% in the last 4 months.”

  • The power companies want a prompt payment mechanism with regard to change-in-law items (regulatory dues). Recently, the Union power ministry has directed the Central Electricity Regulatory Commission to compute the increase in tariffs that additional (post-power purchase agreement) taxes and duties would have necessitated within 30 days after a generator filed the petition for such a revision. Once a generator’s plea is accepted under ‘change-in-law’ condition, other generators with the same demand should also get similar benefits, without filing separate petitions, the ministry said.



 
Discoms’ dues to IPPs cross Rs 36,260 crore, delayed payments for power sold are adding to the woes of stressed projects 11/15/2018 12:00:00 AM
 
  • Even as stressed assets with a combined capacity of 32 gigawatts are on the verge of insolvency — another 7-gigawatt capacity is already undergoing the insolvency process at the National Company Law Tribunal — these power companies are finding it hard to recover dues from procuring states in time.

  • According to data available with the power ministry’s ‘praapti’ portal, the state-run discoms owed 10 generators ù seven private and three state-owned — Rs 26,500 crore as of August-end. Of this, Rs 17,760 crore is due to independent power producers (IPPs), Rs 4,340 crore to state-owned NTPC and the balance to firms like NHPC, DVC, SJVNL etc.

  • If the so-called regulatory dues of Rs 18,500 crore is included, the outstanding amounts by the discoms to IPPs alone would be a staggering Rs 36,260 crore.

  • Generators are privileged to report payment defaults of more than 60 days to the government on a voluntary basis.

  • The total payment defaulted by discoms, according to industry sources, could be even higher as several producers haven’t reported the outstanding amounts. Major companies like Tata Power, Adani Power and GMR Energy, among many others, for instance, haven’t uploaded the latest status of discoms’ unpaid dues to them.

  • While the stressed IPPs and the state-run generators are left high and dry by discoms, the latter have shown sharper reductions in their financial losses. The discoms had posted an annual reduction of Rs 17,352 crore (50%) in their losses by the end of March 2018, under the Ujwal Discom Assurance Yojana (UDAY) scheme. Had the payments to the gencos been made in time, the picture would have been less rosy for discoms.

  • Majority of the outstanding is for five states — Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Haryana, Tamil Nadu and Uttar Pradesh.

  • The power companies are facing difficulty in recovering the dues from discoms at a time when the Supreme Court is hearing a batch of petitions against a Reserve Bank of India (RBI) circular that makes it mandatory for lenders to take firms to the insolvency arena in case they failed to come out with a resolution plan within six months after first (a day’s) default.

  • After including the power units before NCLT and those under the threat of getting dragged to these tribunals shortly, the stressed power projects are worth over Rs 2.5 lakh crore.

  • In a recent letter to Cabinet secretary Pradeep Kumar Sinha, the Association of Power Producers wrote: “… It is impossible for any developer to keep his assets in bank’s ‘standard’ category, in an eco system which stipulates default even if there is just one day’s delay in payment of interest or principal (sic); and all payments for inputs are to be made in advance (coal/evacuation of coal), while at the same time the output payments are delayed beyond 6 months and are progressively increasing — this amount has shown an increase of 40% in the last 4 months.”

  • The power companies want a prompt payment mechanism with regard to change-in-law items (regulatory dues). Recently, the Union power ministry has directed the Central Electricity Regulatory Commission to compute the increase in tariffs that additional (post-power purchase agreement) taxes and duties would have necessitated within 30 days after a generator filed the petition for such a revision. Once a generator’s plea is accepted under ‘change-in-law’ condition, other generators with the same demand should also get similar benefits, without filing separate petitions, the ministry said.



 
India needs to tap Hydro Power’s potential; here’s what should be done to remove hurdles 11/5/2018 12:00:00 AM
 
  • Despite India being resource-rich, hydro power is yet to contribute a commensurate share to its energy mix, accounting for only 13.2% of the installed generation capacity of 343,899 MW. The north-eastern state of Arunachal Pradesh best represents this scenario, having a mere 118 MW of installed capacity compared to a potential 50,000 MW.

  • Besides what this entails for a rapidly expanding economy, the underutilisation of resources denies the system hydro power’s advantage of starting and stopping generation faster than other conventional modes, which helps balance the transmission grid. This is especially important given the recent surge in solar and wind power generation, which can be uncertain and intermittent.

  • Since the sector was opened to private participation in 1991, just 3.2 GW (or 7% of the installed hydro capacity) has been commissioned by private players to date, with time and cost overruns coming in the way of investment. The sector is reeling under cost overruns of about `52,697 crore. Of the 37 hydro projects with 12,178 MW capacity under implementation, work at 16 plants with 5,190 MW capacity is stalled—mostly due to fund constraints. The largest among the stalled assets is the NHPC’s (formerly National Hydro Power Corporation) 2,000-MW Lower Subansiri project on the Assam-Arunachal border—protests by activists over project impact is behind the impasse. Lack of clear policy guidelines, long gestation periods, uncertain geological conditions and infrastructural challenges are the other factors impeding the sector’s growth.

  • Sharad Mahendra, COO, JSW Energy, tells FE the sector would get a boost if the government opted for a hydro-purchase obligation policy, as in the case of solar and wind energy. With its 1,000-MW Karcham-Wangtoo plant and the 300-MW Baspa hydro plant, JSW Energy owns 40% of the total private hydro capacity. The Karcham-Wangtoo facility is a run-of-the-river plant on the Sutlej in Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh – by making immediate use of the river flow, run-of-the-river projects check submergence of landmasses, reducing the impact on the local population. However, issues peculiar to hydro power like catchment area treatment and creation of local area development fund add to the capital cost of such projects.

  • “The tenure of loans for hydro projects is another issue,” Mahendra says. “The depreciation period for hydro projects is only 12 years, stricter than for coal-based power plants.” Though electricity from hydro plants becomes cheap after the servicing of loans, high tariffs in the initial years makes it unattractive to discoms. While the average price at which discoms purchase power is Rs 3.5/unit, hydro power can cost as much as `6.4/unit.

  • To make hydro power more affordable, the power ministry has initiated policy measures through which the cost of construction of roads, bridges, and flood moderation infrastructure would be excluded while calculating tariffs for such plants. The NITI Aayog’s draft national energy policy proposes a rehabilitation package for revival of stranded hydro projects, with the project life of such projects being increased (60 years instead of the present 35 ) to allow access to long-term financing. The ministry has also forwarded a proposal to support 33 projects with a combined capacity of 7,893 MW. Under this has been proposed central funding of `11,049 crore through 4% interest subvention for the 2018-2028 period. To encourage private players, discoms would be receiving funds from the Centre to sign hydro power purchase agreements (PPAs) for at least five years. Sources say the government would also be setting up a hydro power development fund to provide capital support in the form of interest subvention.

  • Commenting on the policy proposals, Kameswara Rao, leader energy, utilities and mining, PwC India, says, “they are largely incremental, with a few fiscal sops. Since the real risks are much higher, they are unlikely to spur new investment”. He feels, “an ideal policy would include state support to expedite construction and creation of additional revenue streams, such as for water management and ancillary services”.



 
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