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Arunachal Pradesh Will be Unaffected by Power Crisis: Official

While a power crisis is looming over several states due to shortage of coal, an official in the power department ruled out any shortage of electricity in Arunachal Pradesh as of now.

 “Arunachal Pradesh will remain unaffected by the present crisis as most of the state’s power is provided by the hydroelectric plants within the state,” the official said.

He, however, said that “the real power situation will be cleared in the next few days.”

The prime minister’s office on Tuesday reviewed the coal supply and power generation scenario as the government looks at ways to defuse the energy crisis being faced by several states.

At the meeting over coal shortage at power plants which has led to blackouts in some states, union Power Secretary Alok Kumar and Coal Secretary AK Jain made a presentation on coal and power availability, sources said, adding ways to increase transportation of coal, during the meeting.

The coal ministry has been asked to ramp up the supply of coal, while the railways has been asked to make available rakes to transport the fuel to power plants, the sources said.

The shortage of coal – which makes up around 70 percent of India’s electricity mix – has forced rotational power cuts in states from Rajasthan to Kerala. About two-thirds of the coal-fired power plants had stockpiles of a week or less, but the coal ministry said that “any fear of disruption in the power supply is entirely misplaced.”

States have been forced to buy power from exchanges at high rates to meet demand.

To defuse the crisis, the union power ministry has issued instructions ranging from asking states not to sell power at high prices on the exchange to ordering state electricity generators to ensure adequate supplies.

State-owned Coal India Ltd (CIL) has been asked to augment the coal supply to power producers to 1.55-1.6 million tonnes per day this week and to further scale it up to 1.7 million tonnes daily after 20 October.

The coal dispatched by the CIL to the power sector on Monday stood at 1.615 million tonnes.

Coal Minister Pralhad Joshi said the government is making full efforts to meet the coal demand of power producers. 

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