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Home News Power Sector News CSEB will be divided into 5 companies despite protests from unions

CSEB will be divided into 5 companies despite protests from unions

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Raman SinghChhattisgarh government has decided to divide the Chhattisgarh State Electricity Board (CSEB) into five companies wef 31-12-2008 as per Indian Electricity Act-2003 - one holding company and four others to manage transmission, distribution, generation and trading. Trade unions earlier approached the Government to retain CSEB as single entity as done in Kerala. But the state government has rejected the proposal and even turned down the proposal to form two companies by splitting transmission wing as instructed by central power ministry.

Under the new structure, Chhattisgarh State Power Holding Ltd will be the holding company for 4 entities
1. Chhattisgarh State Power Generation Company Ltd
2. Chhattisgarh State Power Transmission Company Ltd
3. Chhattisgarh State Power Distribution Company Ltd
4. Chhattisgarh State Power Trading Company Ltd

Chhattisgarh State Electricity Board (CSEB) employees on 23-12-2008 staged a massive rally to protest against the decision of the state government to unbundle CSEB into 5 companies. CSEB Employees' Association Convenor P N Singh said the rally was taken out to make people aware about the negative outcome of unbundling of electricity boards in other states. He said certain states like Kerala had not unbundled electricity board and retained it as a single entity in accordance with the provisions of Electricity Act. Seventeen Unions affiliated to the CSEB had went on  strike on 30-12-2008 opposing proposed division of the Board. P.N. Singh, leader of the Employees’ Coordination Committee, said: ‘‘We will not compromise on our demand to scrap the Electricity Act, 2003. No unbundling of the board will be allowed.’’

The Chief Minister patiently heard us, when a delegation met him but gave no assurance,” said the General Secretary CSEB Engineers Association, Mr P N Singh. If the government does not take our suggestions into consideration and take a decision , we would go on strike ,” Mr Singh said. “We explained our position to the CM, and are expecting a favourable response from the government”, he said.  Unions say that they want the government to consult the Unions on the finer points of the unbundling issue.

The final division of the Board is to take place on December 31 as per the requirement of Electricity Act 2003. A separate trading company for selling surplus electricity to others would prove suicidal for Chhattisgarh as the Centre might curtail the state's quota of 600 MW once Chhattisgarh enters into power trading through a separate company, Unions said.

Coal rich Chhattisgarh came into existence on November 1st 2000, when 16 southern districts of erstwhile Madhya Pradesh were carved out. Chhattisgarh accounts for nearly a fourth of India's coal reserves, inspiring it to build large thermal power projects both at the state government level and through private participation. In the H1, Chhattisgarh faced an energy deficit of only 2.9%, which compared favorably with the national average of 10.6%.

As of November end 2008, the total power capacity in Chhattisgarh was 1,917 MW, mainly including 1,780 MW of coal fired projects. Last year, then CSEB commissioned the 500 MW Korba East power project, the first since statehood. In the private sector, the OP Jindal Group recently commissioned the 1,000 MW Raigharh super thermal power project.

Source- PTI


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