BU scuttling project to ease City's power problem, says KPTCL

BU scuttling project  to ease City's power problem, says KPTCL

The Karnataka Power Transmission Corporation Limited (KPTCL) has said that Bangalore University’s (BU) decision not to allow laying of cables on its Jnanabharathi campus has hindered the work of a project to connect the campus and the adjoining areas with 220 KV station at Vrishabavathi valley.

“At present power is evacuated from 400 kv station at Somanahalli through 66 kv lines, which connects Kumbalgod and Kengeri. We installed a station at Vrishabavathi valley and were planning to link it up with Sir M Visvesvaraya (Sir M V) Layout via Jnanabharathi from other side through 66 kv lines. But we are unable to do so because of the adamant stance taken by BU,” a top official from KPTCL told Deccan Herald. The line would have ensured uninterrupted power supply to a large portion of the City including the proposed Nadaprabhu Kempegowda Layout, he added.

The university is said to have told the KPTCL that it will allow the work on its campus if Rs four crore is paid as road cutting charge. “Even the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) charge for road cutting does not exceed Rs 30 lakh,” the official added.

During several meetings including the recent one on December 9, 2013, KPTCL had told BU that the campus needs 66 KV lines to ensure adequate and quality power supply to its buildings and streets and its adjoining areas. The overhead HT cables, considered to be vulnerable to mishaps, will be replaced with safe underground cables. “Even when the roads were not in good shape three years ago, the varsity had objected to the project. Now they demand hefty road cutting charge,” said the official.

The KPTCL has completed laying of cables up to the university gate and all it needs is to complete another 1.7 km. “We will go beneath the footpath and will not harm the newly laid road, as claimed by BU, up to the hostel and from there it will be diverted to a village adjoining the varsity and linked to Sir M V Layout. It hardly needs two months time to complete the work,” said the official.

“Even the BBMP and the Bangalore Development Authority (BDA) have permitted the work by just taking road cutting charges till the varsity gate. We have completed about 3.5 kms of cable laying and now the project hangs in balance after investing crores of rupees. In addition to this, the project delay has cost us at least Rs 5 crore,” added the official.

Alternative route

The BU Vice Chancellor Prof Thimme Gowda on Thursday invited the KPTCL authorities for a dialogue suggesting different route to lay cables. The Vice Chancellor showed the alternative route, but laid a condition that no work should be carried out until it is approved by the varsity in its syndicate meeting, he added.

“We have examined the alternative route. We are willing to take up works in this route though it would cost us more. Since the university is insisting on it, we will go ahead with this option,” said G Kumar Naik, MD KPTCL.

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