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Power minister points finger at states for worsening electricity crisis

Several states, as per RK Singh, were not lifting domestic coal on a war footing, stepping up fuel imports and allowing pass-through of high fuel costs, Financial Times has reported.

April 29, 2022 / 10:05 AM IST
Representative image

Representative image

Power minister RK Singh on April 28 said that there is power shortage in some states as payments have not been made to generation firms.

Several states, as per Singh, were not lifting domestic coal on a war footing, stepping up fuel imports and allowing pass-through of high fuel costs, Financial Times has reported.

"The system has the capacity to meet demand as is evident from the peak demand met. Power is available on the exchanges with a tariff cap of Rs 12 per unit (in the day-ahead market). Still, they are not buying and resorting to load shedding," TOI has reported citing the power minister.

Power secretary Alok Kumar said there was still 4,000-5,000 MW available from the Centre's pool, but there hasn't been any demand from the states yet.

Speaking on coal shortage at power plants, Singh stated that the shortage is due to logistics but enough fuel is available.

"We have 21 million tonnes of coal in reserve stock at power plants, which is enough for 10 days. We don't draw from it every day, only when supply is less than consumption. Stocks are being replenished daily, rising to 400 rakes," he told the daily.

Moneycontrol couldn't independently confirm the news development

Meanwhile, India's peak power demand met the highest supply in a day when it touched all-time high of 204.65 GW on Thursday amid ongoing heatwave sweeping through swathes of the country.

"During the current month of April, 2022 (Up to 28th April, till 14:50 Hours), peak power demand met has increased by 12.1 per cent to 204.653 GW from 182.559 GW during same period previous year," a source said.

On Tuesday, the maximum all India power demand met or the highest supply in a day was at the record level 201.06 GW. The peak power supply had surpassed last year's maximum demand met of 200.53 GW on 7th July, 2021.

However, the power demand surpassed the supply as there was a deficit of 8.22 GW on Tuesday, according to the official data.

Similarly, there was unmet power demand of 10.29 GW on Wednesday even as the highest supply on that day was at 200.65 GW.

The demand for power is expected to rise further in coming days as the weather department has predicted that heatwave sweeping through the country will intensify in the next five days.

The IMD has issued an "orange" alert for Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and parts of Maharashtra, and predicted a rise of another two degrees Celsius in northwest region.

A heatwave spell will persist over northwest and central India during the next five days and over east India during the next three days, an India Meteorological Department (IMD) forecast said on Thursday.

In the month of March this year, the growth in energy demand has been around 8.9 per cent as per the ministry's statement.

Further, it stated that the demand is expected to reach about 215-220 GW in months of May-June, the ministry had stated.

With the mercury shooting up in Delhi, the power demand on Thursday crossed 6,000 MW mark for the first time in the month of April, discom officials said.

The peak power demand of the city was 6000 MW at 3.31 pm, according to realtime data of State Load Dispatch Centre (SLDC) Delhi.

"For the first time in April, Delhi's peak power demand clocked 6,000 MW. It was 3.7 per cent more as compared to 5,769 MW on Wednesday afternoon," said a discom official.

The maximum temperature may even leap to 46 degrees Celsius in parts of Delhi, a Met department official said.

A BSES spokesperson said that the peak power demand in the areas of its discoms -- BRPL and BYPL-- clocked 2,549 MW and 1,375 MW respectively as the city's demand soared to 6,000 MW.

Moneycontrol News
first published: Apr 29, 2022 10:04 am