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Bad days ahead for Delhi on power front

Special Correspondent

Distribution system faulty and inefficient, says electricity authority official

NEW DELHI: Delhi will continue to reel under severe power crisis for the next few months as its distribution system is so faulty and inefficient that it will take longer to absorb the power transmission through various generating units, according to Member (Planning), Central Electricity Authority, V.S. Verma.

"Even if the Delhi government puts up a new 500 MW power plant in and around Delhi, it would be extremely difficult to meet the peak power requirement of Delhi because of its inefficient power distribution system," Mr. Verma said while inaugurating Assocham and Global Energy Decisions organised seminar on `Software Solutions for Power Utilities'.

He, however, added that on an average the power shortage of Delhi is to the extent of 300 MW for peak period, and efforts are on to curtail it but these would pay provided the distribution network absorbs capacities for power transmission. "It is a paradox that during the lean period when the power requirement of Delhi is not much, it exports power to neighbouring states of Himachal and even Jammu and Kashmir," said Mr. Verma.

Talking about the 10th Plan power capacity achievements targets, he said that 40,000 MW of power capacities would be added during the plan period by March 31, 2007.

As regards to 11th Plan period, Mr. Verma was of the view that India would be able to add another 70,000 MW of power capacities by 2012 and most of the capacity additions would be conducted through thermal power stations. The major area for concern consists of choices for fuel for power generation as India is ill-equipped for power inputs, particularly when there is a shortage of nuclear power inputs, hydro units take longer gestation period and because there is no gas in these regions, the government would have to fall back on coal power generations, even if it has to be imported in massive quantity, he further pointed out.

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