The Fact News Service
New Delhi, September 10
Facing a coal shortage, the Rajasthan government cut short its supply of electricity to Punjab and discontinued to Uttar Pradesh, officials said.
Though the situation of coal and power generation has improved in the last week, a unit of Kalisindh thermal power plant is shut due to the shortage.
The state faced a shortage of coal as the Rajasthan Vidhyut Utpadan Nigam Limited (power generation firm) failed to make payments for coal, and thereafter the supply has become difficult as the coal mines are flooded with water.
To deal with the power crisis, the Rajasthan government has completely stopped the supply of electricity to the neighbouring BJP-ruled Uttar Pradesh. Power supply to Congress-ruled Punjab has also been cut short as out of 200 MW, 80 MW of power is being supplied to the state. There has been a complete ban on 600 MW power being given to Uttar Pradesh.
August witnessed, undeclared power cuts of 4-5 hours in the state, especially in rural areas, as the electricity demand increased due to poor monsoon.
In August end, due to the shortage of coal, seven thermal power units in Rajasthan were shut and the rests have 3-4 days of stock left, HT had learnt.
Energy minister BD Kalla, who twice held meetings with the Central officials for an adequate supply of coal, believes that the situation has improved.
Kalla said, “The supply crisis was for 5-7 days and now this is being managed properly. The state is receiving around 7 rakes of coal daily from Coal India. Other than these, 9-10 rakes are coming from our allotted coal blocks in Parsa, Chhattisgarh. The state requires 20-25 rakes daily for smooth production and maintaining stock.”
On discontinuing supply to Punjab and Uttar Pradesh, he said the production is usually in surplus these days (during monsoon), but due to the shortage, the power banking system got affected and the supply to the states was postponed. “As it is in surplus these days, we give supply to states for Kharif crops and take during Rabi,” said Kalla.
The minister said the demand during monsoon is less but this time instead of 20 crore units, the demand was 30 crore units. Daily 4.5 rakes are allotted but only 3 were given by the Centre. The crisis was only for a week, and similar was the situation in other states such as Bihar, Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh, he added.