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Power crisis persists in Odisha, Bihar despite adequate supply

While the Odisha government on Saturday confirmed adequate coal supply to power plant in the state, neightbouring Bihar boasted of meeting 5.5 to 6,000 megawatt power demand during rush hours every day.

SNS | New Delhi |

 

At a time when several states are grappling with acute power crisis, Odisha and Bihar denied any shortage of coal or power in both the states. While the Odisha government on Saturday confirmed adequate coal supply to power plant in the state, neightbouring Bihar boasted of meeting 5.5 to 6,000 megawatt power demand during rush hours every day.

Odisha Chief Secretary SC Mahapatra told reporters that unlike other states where power supply is being cut down for 10 to 12 hours per day due to its shortage, there is no coal crisis in Odisha like.

Pointing out that the state has coal mines in the state, the chief secretary said, “I have instructed Mahanadi Coalfields Ltd (MCL) to ensure supply of adequate quantity of coal to all power plants in the state.”

However, official sources said, Odisha is facing a power crisis due to an outage of a NTPC unit and increase in demand in view of severe heat wave conditions.

Meanwhile, highlighting the reduced power crunch issue in Bihar, Managing Director of South Bihar Power Distribution Corporation Ltd (SBPDCL) Mahendra Kumar, said, “Due to overload in some of the power generation units or any kind of technical issues, we sometimes receive 500 to 600 megawatt less power, because of which, our power supply has been disrupted for a few hours in specific areas.”

The SBPDCL managing director pointed out that SBPDCL is currently receiving electricity from different sources including the National Thermal Power Corporation Limited (NTPCL) and if all of them provide electricity, there would be no shortage.

“As the summer session began in March this year, the consumption of electricity is high these days,” Kumar said.

When it comes to the North Bihar Power Distribution Company Ltd, the consumption is slightly less compared to SBPDCL as the latter used to cater to major cities like Patna, Gaya, Bhagalpur etc.

Electricity in Bihar is currently being produced through thermal units, hydropower units, solar power and wind power.

The NTPC in Bihar has units in Kahalgaon, Barh and Nabinagar Aurangabad with a capacity to generate 2,340, 1,320 and 1,320 megawatt power respectively.

Vinodanand Jha, joint secretary in the energy department, said: “The state government does not produce energy. We purchase electricity from NTPC hydropower and wind energy companies. Hence, it is hard to tell the current stock of coal in the state. Coal is required only for thermal units.”

Meanwhile, power supply was disrupted in Kishanganj, Katihar, Araria and Purnea in the Seemanchal zone, due to strong winds in the region. Power cuts took place in Patna, Gaya, Arrah, Buxar and Sasaram in south Bihar as well.

In Odisha, the sudden outage in an 800-megawatt (MW) capacity unit at NTPC’s Darlipali plant in Sundergarh district has led to the power crisis in the state as it used to get 400 MW from the unit.

Besides, the peak power demand has gone up by almost 10 per cent due to the hot weather conditions, said official sources in the state energy department.

Now, the state’s peak hour power demand (from 7 p.m. till 11 p.m.) has been estimated at 4,000 to 4,400 MW and there is a shortfall of 450 MW.

The energy department has requested the power consumers to regulate their AC load, flexible industrial load and agricultural load during the peak hours for next few days to maintain stable power supply.(

(Inputs from IANS)