Tribune News Service
Patiala, December 24
Soon after taking over as the Chairman-cum-Managing Director of Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL), Baldev Singh Saran said that he would work hard to provide affordable and uninterrupted power to the people of the state.
When Saran was reminded of the coal crisis, he said, “We have our own coal mine in Jharkhand’s Pachwara block, and we can get cheaper and better quality coal from there – to generate electricity. For a long time. Punjab can save around Rs 600 crore to Rs 700 crore annually by operating this non-operational coal mine. As a result, the cost of power will come down and consumers will get the benefit,” said the new CMD.
The Supreme Court, in September this year, had paved the way for the restarting of the Pachwara coal mine, which could help in saving at least 20p-30p per unit.
He said that bringing cheaper coal from Pachwara is one of the priority areas on which he will work.
Experts say that the re-operation of Pachwara coal mines will be a boon for Punjab, given the upcoming paddy season and the inability of Coal India Limited to meet the demands of the states.
Deputy Chief Minister Sukhjinder Randhawa, who was present on the occasion, commented on the cancellation of power purchase agreements with three IPPs, saying that the government has already made up its mind to take up one of the thermal plants, and passed a bill. Have renegotiated power rates with the other two private thermal and several solar IPPs. The minister claimed that Punjab would once again be made power surplus.
‘Disappointed with the demand for posting of choice’
Meanwhile, CMD Saran said he was disappointed with the officers’ demands for choice posting. He said that even before he came to office, several officials had started pressurizing him for the posting of his choice. “The same eagerness – as shown by some officers to get postings of their choice – to address the issues of the consumers is not visible in the functioning of the department. Our department is already notorious for corruption. So we should work sincerely to improve its image.”