Gandhinagar: The Gujarat State Government procured power from a private player by paying Rs. 828 Crore in excess to the agreed rate, shows the figures provided by the state government during the ongoing budget session of the Assembly on Tuesday March 15.
Responding to questions asked by Congress legislators about the details of power procured from the Coastal Gujarat Power limited (CGPL) – a subsidiary of Tata Power – by the state, Energy Minister Kanu Desai said that the state government had carried out the purchase of power with the company according to the Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) of buying each unit at the rate Rs. 2.26 for a period of 25 years.
However, as per the figures provided by the minister, the state government had procured power from the company at the rate ranging from Rs 2.71 per unit to Rs 3.16 per unit between January 2020 and September 2021.
Thereafter, despite the PPA, the state government had paid Rs. 307.42 Crore in October 2021 at the rate Rs. 5.47 per unit, paid Rs. 501.08 Crore in November 2021 at the rate Rs 5.58 per unit and Rs. 604.07 Crore in December 2021 at the rate Rs. 5.36 per unit, showed the data.
The State Government seemed to have paid around Rs. 828 Crore in excess to the amount agreed under the PPA.
Justifying the excess payment made between October 2021 and December 2021, the minister informed the House that there was an “immense hike” in the price of imported coal and the power producers “could not afford” to produce electricity at the agreed upon rates due to the international price hike and they had stopped supplying power to the state. In order to maintain the power supply, after the Centre’s mediation it was agreed that as a temporary arrangement, the state will be buying power at the rate Rs 4.50 per unit from the imported coal based power projects.