• Kerala State Electricity Board confident of tackling power crisis in the state

    Though the new power minister, M M Mani, has been hinting at the possibility of power restrictions in the coming days, top Kerala State Electricity Board officials say that the situation is not that bad.

    According to the officials, the chances of a load shedding or any other form of major power restrictions were remote now. “It’s true that the power scenario across the country is bad at present. Kerala, being a state mostly dependent on power generated outside the state, will obviously suffer in the event of even a mild turmoil in the national power scene.

    But the situation, as of now, has not aggravated to a position that would force the board to impose load shedding or power cuts,” said an official.

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    Sources said, the repair work in the Moolamattom power station was progressing satisfactorily and the work on the penstock valves would be completed by December 6. Three of the six generators in KSEB’s biggest hydel station were out of action after a leakage was detected in the penstock pipe that carry water to the generators.

    “The present crisis began with the central allocation from the Talcher power plant in Odisha coming down. One unit in Koodankulam atomic power plant is also out. The board is also not getting the power we have contracted with a private power generator. All this have contributed to a daily power deficit up to 500 MW,” said a board director.

    “However, we have made arrangements for purchase of power from outside the state. There will be price difference, but we are confident of facing the crisis without power cuts or load shedding,” he added.

    Meanwhile, the state government is learnt to have given KSEB the go ahead to honour long term power purchase agreements, the procedural correctness of which was questioned by the state power regulatory commission. The regulator had earlier refused to fully accept the agreement reached between KSEB and various power generating companies for purchase of 865 MW power for 25 years from December 2016.

    The annual purchase of 6,440 Million Units (MU) power at an average rate of Rs 4.11 per unit would come to around Rs 2,650 crore. It would total to Rs 66,225 crore on completion of the 25 years of agreement period. Bryan Witzmann Authentic Jersey

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