Uncertainty in Kashmir: No company ready to take up power reforms project
18: Uncertainty has severely hit much
awaited power reforms project as private companies have expressed reluctance to
work in Kashmir.
‘Restructured-Accelerated Power Development and Reforms Program (R-APDRP)’
scheme, the government had invited tenders from private players for augmenting
power infrastructure and reducing transmission and distribution losses.
The project was
allotted to Kolkatta based company in 2014 and the company was asked to
complete the project in two years. Despite giving two year extension, the
company failed to complete the task and with the result the government
terminated their contract.
For the last one
year, the PDD had invited tenders twice but no company showed any interest in
the project. “It is a major setback that no company is coming forward to work
on the project citing uncertainty in Kashmir. One of the companies told us that
it is not possible to work on this project under present circumstances,” said
an official of Power Development Department.
Under Rs 662
Crore project, the government intended to install new transformers, new cables
and poles, and build necessary infrastructure to bring down transmission and
distribution (T&D) losses to 20 percent from present 50 percent.
Kashmir is facing
huge power crisis this winter. The electricity scenario deteriorates during
winter months when the power demand reaches over 2000 MWs against the availability
of 1200 MWs.
“We provide 1200
MWs of electricity to consumers in Kashmir and the demand during winter months
reaches to 2000 MWs. Like the previous years, there won’t be any improvement in
the power supply as Kashmir lacks required infrastructure like transformers and
grids,” said a senior official of the Power Development Department.