KD NEWS SERVICE
NEW DELHI, Dec 8: Lieutenant Governor of Jammu & Kashmir Manoj Sinha met Union Power & NRE Minister R. K. Singh in New Delhi last evening in the wake of rising power demand in UT, as a result of economic growth and increasing electrification, during the ongoing winter season.
The LG informed that the current demand of UT of J&K has touched around 2800 MW with a deficit of approximately 1400 MW in the current winter season. Sinha requested the Union Power Minister for allocating more power to the UT.
Union Power Minister apprised LG that the Ministry of Power has already allocated 1500 MW from Central pool to meet the winter requirements of J&K. Further, 472 MW is also allocated under Shakti policy, for which, Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with Power department of J&K is proposed to be signed by the end of Dec, 23. Overall, 1972 MW of additional allocation has been made by the Central government to take care of the urgent power requirement of the Union Territory. The Minister directed the officers of the Ministry of Power to ensure adequate allocation of Power to the UT of J&K to meet the rising demand.
R. K. Singh reviewed various programmes of the Ministry of Power being implemented in the UT, under Central Sector Schemes. The Power Minister directed the concerned agencies to expedite the ongoing projects related to transmission lines, smart meters and other distribution infrastructure works.
He directed that all the remaining projects should be awarded by the end of December 2023 and also that completion of all the ongoing projects should be ensured as per the schedule. It was informed that Ministry of Power under various programmes like PMDP, PMRP and RDSS have already sanctioned Rs. 10691 crores for strengthening of the power systems in the UT of J&K. It was reported that more than 4.25 lakh smart pre-paid meters have already been installed under PMDP and RDSS schemes and that a remarkable improvement in the billing and collection efficiency has been noticed in these areas. 100% smart pre-paid metering is targeted to be achieved by 2025-26.
The Power Minister appreciated the efforts made by the UT in the implementation of various programmes of the Ministry of Power, Government of India, which has resulted in drastic reduction of AT&C losses in the UT since 2019.
Singh informed the LG that the power generation capacity in J&K will be doubled in the coming 3-4 years. He added that four Mega Hydro Electric Projects with total capacity of 3,014 MW – namely PakalDul (1,000MW), Kiru (624 MW), Kwar (540 MW) and Ratle (830 MW) – which were either stalled or could not commence due to various issues for past so many years have now been fast-tracked and are fully on track for completion before 2026. In addition, MoUs between Government of India and Government of J&K have been signed, for development of 4 more Mega Hydel Projects worth Rs 29,600 crores, with total capacity of 3,284 MW.
The LG requested the Power Minister to allocate additional funds under RDSS for further upgradation and modernisation of the distribution infrastructure in the UT, including replacement of outdated conductors, transformers and poles. R. K. Singh suggested the LG to send proposals in this regard and assured him that the Ministry will positively consider the proposal for the development of J&K.