Non end in sight to Valley’s power woes
Lack Of Grid Capacity Impeding Electricity Import
Srinagar, Dec 1: As Kashmir continues to reel under darkness due to frequent power cuts, failure of the state government to have minimum required grid capacity in the Valley is the major infrastructural bottleneck hampering import of requisite energy.
According to Power Development Department (PDD) sources, the state is importing around 750 MWs of electricity from northern grid through 400 KV Kishenpore-Wagoora and 220 KV Kishenpore-Pampore transmission lines. In addition 30 MWs are imported through 132 KV Udhampur-Wanpoh transmission line which feeds Tethar and Mattan grid stations.
The imported energy from Northern Grid and the locally generated power is pooled up at two grid stations on 220 KV level—one at Pampore in district Pulwama having three units of 150 MVA each and another at Zainakote in Srinagar having three units of 150 MVA each, officials said. After synchronization of the energy imported from the Northern Region Load Dispatch Centre, New Delhi at these sub-stations the same is then supplied to consumers in the Valley.
To augment the infrastructure for import of energy, PDD had started construction of four more grid stations in the Valley several years back. However, the progress of work on these grid stations coming up at Mirbazaar (Anantnag) in South Kashmir, Amargarh (Delina) in North Kashmir and Budgam and Alusteng (Ganderbal) in central Kashmir is going on at a dismal pace.
Officials said while the Valley on average consumes 180 lakh units of energy per day (more than 800 MWs) including local generation, the peak demand (in morning and (evening hours especially during winters) shoots up to 1350 MWs.
“On November 29 the energy consumption in the valley stood at 170.49 lakh units of power,” PDD sources said.
“To tide over the energy demand-supply gap, PDD needs to import more energy or increase local generation. But due to non-availability of adequate grid facility, the PDD is not in a position to import more than 750 MWs at a time. And any overload on these grids could lead to collapse of system and total shutdown in the Valley. Even if we have the extra energy available from the Northern Grid we can’t use it as there is no adequate grid capacity available in the Valley,” sources said and added that even if the local generation is increased, there is no infrastructure available to pool it for distribution.
To overcome this problem sources said the state government, under Prime Ministers Reconstruction Program, has allotted construction of four grid stations across the Valley to outside companies. However, it has failed to ensure timely completion of the much-needed sub-stations to facilitate better supply of electricity to consumers.
Sources told Greater Kashmir that the construction work on 320 MVA grid station at Mirbazaar (Qazigund) in south Kashmir, 160 MVA Amargarh (Delina) in north Kashmir, 320 MVA Budgam and 320 MVA Alusteng (Ganderbal) was allotted on turnkey basis to two outside companies during 2007.
While Amargarh and Alusteng grid stations coming up at a cost of Rs 79 crore and Rs 86 crore respectively were allotted to Mumbai-based Jyoti Structures Ltd, Rs 73 crore Mirbazaar grid station and Rs 60 crore Budgam station were allotted to UB Engineering Limits.
Official documents claim that in case of Mirbazaar, Budgam and Amargarh stations 60 percent, 70 percent and 80 percent of the building room work stands completed respectively and 40 percent, 45 percent and 60 percent of foundation works for structures/equipment and erection has been done respectively. In case of Alusteng sub-station retaining walls, control room building is under progress and 20 percent of control room building work stands completed, the document said.
However officials argue that though the original date of completion of the grid stations—Mirbazaar, Budgam, Amargarh and Alusteng—was between 2008 and 2009, the delay forced the revision of the completion period to 2010-11.
“Given the snails pace of work going on the projects, these are set to miss the deadline again,” sources said.
Given the mounting demand for import of power in the absence of local production, sources said the immediate need was for more than six grid stations of 320 MVA each at 220 KV level to overcome the crisis.
To tide over the shortage of electricity, officials said the department was resorting to distress cut for hours in different areas which was a result of increase in consumption of energy in winters.
Lastupdate on : Wed, 1 Dec 2010 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Wed, 1 Dec 2010 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Thu, 2 Dec 2010 00:00:00 IST
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