Cabinet approves coal supply to short term PPAs; Renewable status to hydro plants, Rs 21,000 cr power plants in UP, Bihar

The Union Cabinet on Thursday has approved granting coal supply to power plants with short term power purchase agreements, renewable status to hydroelectric plants and cleared investment of Rs 21000 crore for setting up two new coal-based plants in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar.

The cabinet approved various recommendations made by group of ministers related to coal supply issues to stressed power plants including allowing power plants to use coal contracts in case of termination of power purchase agreements due to payment default by discoms.

The cabinet also allowed procurement of bulk power by a nodal agency against pre-declared Coal India contracts and approved increasing quantity of coal for special auctions to power sector.

The Cabinet approved investment for setting up 1320-mw thermal power projects each at Buxar in Bihar by SJVN Ltd and Khurja in Uttar Pradesh by THDC Ltd. Announcements for both the projects were made by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2015 during his visits to the places.

The Cabinet also gave approval for acquisition of Lanco Teesta Hydro Power Ltd (LTHPL) and execution of balance work of the Teesta Stage-Vl project in Sikkim by NHPC Ltd at a cost of Rs 5,748 crore.

Investment sanction of Rs 4287 crore for construction of 624-mw Kiru Hydro Electric Project located on river Chenab in Kishtwar district of Jammu & Kashmir by NHPC and J&K state power development utility joint venture was also approved. The project is scheduled to be completed in 4.5 years by Chenab Valley Power Projects Pvt Ltd.