Bawana plant gets gas after 5 months
Big relief for Delhi, less power cuts likely
Five months after the petroleum ministry sanctioned the supply of natural gas from the Reliance Industries-owned KG basin, the company began fuelling Delhi’s Bawana power plant.
The move comes as a big relief to Delhi residents facing power outages in the peak summer season.
The union ministry had sanctioned the power plant to take 0.836 MMSCMD (million metric standard cubic metres per day) of gas from Reliance. But the company had expressed its inability to supply it, citing earlier commitments.
Delhi government, facing shortage of power in the City, was pressing hard for it to comply. Earlier last month, chief minister Sheila Dikshit even sought Central government’s intervention to make Reliance begin supplying gas.
“All the loose ends have been tied and Bawana power plant is getting the gas now. This is good news for Delhiites as we will be able to produce more electricity now,” said Shakti Sinha, Delhi’s principal secretary (power).
The government had earlier ruled out buying gas from other commercial sources as that would have led to an increase in the cost of power production.
‘Gas at cheaper rate’
“Reliance can give us gas at a much cheaper rate. We can’t afford buying commercial gas from others as it will lead to an increase in electricity prices and people will have to shell out more,” Delhi chief secretary P K Tripathi had told Deccan Herald in May.
The module I of Bawana power plant, with a capacity to produce at least 750 MW of power, was ready in April 2011. But it ended up producing only about 300 MW of power from November after the oil ministry allocated 1.564 MMSCMD gas to the plant from the Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC).
The plant built at a cost of Rs 4,500 crore will have the capacity to produce 1,500 MW after its module II becomes functional later this year.