Development of small hydroelectric projects in J&K

CAG says only projects with 79 MWs commissioned against potential of  1725 MWs; Rs 2000 crore under PMDP not released

In what could raise questions on J&K Government’s capacity to harness water resources, the Comptroller and Auditor General of India has revealed that only 10 micro/mini/small hydel power projects with the capacity of 79.75 MWs (five percent) have been commissioned in Jammu & Kashmir against 374 identified project sites with power generation capacity of 1,725.53 MWs.

In its observations on development on the development of micro/ mini/ small hydroelectric projects in Jammu and Kashmir, the auditor has revealed that out of 374 identified project sites with a power generation capacity of 1,725.53 MWs, only 10 projects with a capacity of 79.75 MWs (five percent) had been commissioned.

These projects were completed with time overruns ranging between four months and over seven years, the report reveals

“While no action was taken for 225 sites (60 per cent) after their identification, bids were invited for 115 sites (31 per cent) only. No response was received for 70 sites and out of 45 sites awarded for development of hydro power projects, 32 IPPs either failed to fulfill commitments like obtaining statutory clearances for execution of projects or did not deposit upfront premium or the allotment of projects was terminated due to land issues, slow progress and techno economic viability reasons,” reads the report, a copy of which is with news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO)

The audit also pointed out that Jammu & Kashmir couldn’t avail Rs 2000 crore proposed for the development of small hydroelectric projects under the Prime Minister’s Development Package announced in 2015.

“For 20 sites proposed under Prime Minister’s Development Package (PMDP), GoI had not acceded to the request of the Government of J&K for the release of funds. The project “Implementation of Small Hydro power projects” with provision  Rs  2,000 crore was sanctioned (November 2015) under PMDP. The Board of Directors (BoD) of JKPDC in its 73rd meeting (October 2017) accorded approval for implementation of 20 projects through EPC mode to be funded under PMDP as well as funds to be arranged by Power Development Department subject to their viability vis-à-vis evacuation of power. The request of GoJ&K for release of funds under PMDP was not acceded by GoI in view of high project cost and unviable tariff of these 20 projects as a result the JKPDC could not avail assistance from GoI,” the report states—(KNO)

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