| A coal rake at NTPC, Kahalgaon. Picture by Amit Kumar |
NTPC Kahalgaon authorities hope for an amicable and early settlement to the dispute over payments with Eastern Coalfields Limited so that supply from Rajmahal coalfields is restored.
The supply from Rajmahal coalfields, an undertaking of Eastern Coalfields Limited (ECL), at Godda in Jharkhand, has been stopped since December 26 over non-payment of nearly Rs 100 crore.
Chief general manager of Rajmahal Coalfields Limited, G.D. Pandey, told reporters at Lalmatiya that according to new cash and carry policy norms effective from October 1, 2013, coal could be supplied only after advance payment. He said NTPC paid Rs 90 crore on December 11, 2013, but failed to meet the December 21, 2013, deadline to pay nearly Rs 100 core. “When NTPC failed to pay despite reminders, we were forced to stop supply.”
He said it was not possible to supply coal in advance owing to shortage in production. Besides, NTPC already owes them Rs 1,045 crore for long and it would not be possible for them to provide it coal unless the dues are cleared.
NTPC, Kahalgaon, general manager Prasant Kumar Mohapatra, was hopeful the dues would be cleared by December 30. He told reporters: “There are some differences over the due amount. Our figures are different from what ECL claims. We hope to find an amicable solution soon.”
Regarding stoppage of coal supply, he said there was no immediate threat to generation of power as NTPC had enough coal stock. Besides, it was not getting coal from just Rajmahal.