Ranchi, Oct. 17: Reliance Power Limited, which is executing a Rs 20,000-crore mega power project in Jharkhand, is worried about the delay in getting land amid concerns that the company is unlikely to meet the 2015 deadline to kick off generation.
The Anil Ambani-owned company is setting up a 3,960MW ultra mega power plant in Hazaribagh’s Tilaiya.
It bagged the project through a competitive bidding process in 2009-10.
Today, officials of Jharkhand Integrated Power Limited (JIPL), formed by Reliance Power to execute the ambitious project, met state mandarins, including chief secretary R.S. Sharma, in Ranchi to take stock of the situation and discuss the land issue threadbare.
According to high-level sources, the officials voiced concerns about the delay in physically possessing the earmarked land for the power plant at the hour-long meeting at Project Building.
The company requires around 3,000 acres for the main plant and another 11,000 acres for mining purposes. The required acres comprise private, government and forestland. It has been allotted Keredari B and C coal blocks spread across Hazaribagh and neighbouring Chatra districts.
“We have requested the state government to ensure speedy acquisition, transfer and possession of land for the plant and mining purposes. There has been some developments, but things needs to be expedited further,” said an official of Reliance Power.
The visitors included Mumbai-based JIPL’s project head Balasubramaniam Natarajan, vice-president (projects) G.N. Singh, assistant vice-presidents S.P. Sharan and Alok Shrivastava.
From the state government’s side, besides Sharma, principal secretary of energy department Vimal Kirti Singh, principal secretary of forest and environment department Alka Tiwary, principal secretary of revenue and land reforms department J.B. Tubid, among others, were present at the meeting.
Later speaking to The Telegraph, chief secretary Sharma said: “The proposed power project near Tilaiya village in Hazaribagh will create additional power supply in the state. However, it is taking time to clear the land as it is a huge area and the process is time-taking, but we are at it.”
The chief secretary further said that the officials concerned have been asked to sort out the land acquisition issue as delay in transfer was impending commencement of site development activities.
He has also issued instructions to clear the way for the mining lease and work out a resettlement and rehabilitation plan with the revenue and land reforms department.
According to the agreement, power generated from the proposed Tilaiya plant will be supplied to 18 entities in 10 states across northern and eastern India at a levelized tariff of Rs 1,77/kWh (kilowatt hour).
A low tariff is being targeted because the source of coal is near the proposed site. Further, the advanced “super-critical” technology will be used at the power plant.
This results in higher operating efficiencies and also reduces emissions, thereby making it a green technology.
However, Reliance Power recently sought an increase in tariff due to several factors, including withdrawal of various duty exemptions and cost escalation on account of resettlement and rehabilitation programme.
Last month, the group filed a petition with the Central Electricity Regulatory Commission through JIPL.