RK Singh, Energy News, ET EnergyWorld

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New Delhi: Energy Minister RK Singh on Thursday expressed confidence that most states would be able to submit their detailed project report (DPR) to enroll in the revamped 3.03 power distribution program lakhs Rs by October 31, 2021. Earlier, the Ministry of Energy had extended the deadline for RPD under the program by two months until December 31, 2021, at the request of shocked states. the pandemic.

Singh had a detailed program discussion with his regional batch state counterparts on September 21-23 on the revamped power distribution program.

Informing the media of his deliberations, he said: “All states want to do it (be part of the program). Most states would be able to submit their DPR by October 31. They said they would meet the earlier deadline (October 31, 2021). ”

However, Singh stressed the need for states to come up with a concrete loss reduction plan under the RPD based on a thorough assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of their power distribution system.

Singh said, “You won’t get any money unless you adhere to the loss reduction path … there should be a concrete loss reduction plan (in the DPR) … the network of distribution should be stronger, modern and viable to ensure a 24/7 supply. ”

The minister also asked states to have an IT wing (IT) in their discoms (distribution companies) for effective implementation of smart meters, billing and collections.

Singh told ministers that the growing demand for electricity has necessitated strengthening and upgrading of distribution infrastructure.

He said energy consumption in August 2021 was 124 billion units (BU), which was over 106 BU in August 2019 (pre-pandemic level).

He informed them that the program was designed as a bottom-up program and that discoms / states are empowered to prepare their own DPRs based on their needs assessments, with priority given to loss reduction work.

Modernization works such as increasing the system, renovating and upgrading substations, etc. can also be done by nightclubs under this program, he pointed out.

State electricity ministers appreciated the efforts of the central government to strengthen the electricity sector.

They informed the minister that they were preparing their plans on schedule.

The minister said the plan should address the weakness in the system and that the plan should take into account growing demands.

He said the plan should take into account what demand will be 10 years from now and prepare the system to meet it. He also said the system needs to be modernized.

The Union minister also said that he and his officer will also meet with states and sit with state energy ministers and officers to make them work out their plan.

Singh stressed that funding under the program will be released based on progress made in operational and financial improvements to the nightclubs.

He said reducing disco loss is not a difficult task and to reduce loss they need to focus on improving billing efficiency; improve the efficiency of collection; and ensure timely payment of electricity consumption by government departments.

They must also set tariffs that reflect the true cost of supply and have the state government pay the subsidies on time if they want to provide electricity at lower tariffs, he added.

The minister highlighted another important element of the regime. He said he plans to prioritize 10 crore smart meters in all government departments and offices, Amrut cities, all UTs, high-loss areas, and non-commercial and industrial consumers. agricultural consumers.

He said that sufficient funds are available under the program and that with planning and sincerity of implementation, an operationally efficient and financially sustainable electricity distribution sector can be developed to meet the aspirations of the country’s citizens.

Singh urged state ministers to encourage their states to reap the benefits of the PM-KUSUM program for the solarization of agricultural feeders.

With the solarization of agricultural feeders, electricity can be made available to farmers during the day for free or at a very low price from day 1.

States would save a huge amount of subsidies paid by them for the consumption of electricity in the agricultural sector. In addition, rooftop solar power can also be encouraged to meet growing demand in an environmentally friendly manner.

The ruling Minister of State Krishan Pal Gurjar, the ruling Secretary Alok Kumar and the Chairman and CEOs of PFC and REC were also present at the meeting.

The reorganized, reform-based, results-linked distribution sector program was launched with an expenditure of Rs 3,03,758 crore and estimated gross budget support (gross budget support) from the central government at Rs 97,631 crore. PTI KKS HRS hours


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