The central as well as Uttarakhand governments had envisioned round-the-clock supply of electricity to consumers. However, with the increase in demand and absence of capacity addition, the state has been witnessing shortages even in summer months, when hydro-electric supply levels are high.
Keeping this in mind, the Uttarakhand Electricity Regulatory Commission (UERC) has been pushing Uttarakhand Power Corporation Ltd (UPCL) to enter into long-term commitments with electricity generators.
At present the installed capacity of the generating stations under the control of Uttarakhand Jal Vidyut Nigam (UJVN) is about 1,250 megawatt (MW), while actual generation is almost 900 MW in summer. Power available from central generating stations is about 700 MW and peak demand during summer months in the state is around 2,000 MW, thereby resulting in shortage of about 500 MW.
For the first time, UERC has approved UPCL to enter into long-term (25-35 years) power purchasing agreements (PPAs) with thermal (gas) and hydro generators.
Significant reforms are taking place in the power sector and funds are available to the distribution companies both from the central and state governments to improve power network, reduce losses and ensure quality and reliable supply of power at affordable prices.
It is learnt that having taken care of the gap in demand and supply of power, UERC now intends to focus on ensuring that the consumers get optimum services from UPCL both in terms of quality and reliability of supply and other commercial issues pertaining to billing and metering. The commission has now decided to get this monitored by the state government.
In this regard, a meeting was held in UERC's office on Thursday under its chairman, Subhash Kumar, with the commissioner of Garhwal and district magistrates of all districts in Garhwal region, besides chief engineers, superintendent engineers and executive engineers from UPCL.
Source - TOI