Blackout crisis: Panic created unnecessarily, says Power Minister – Top Points

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Coal crisis: No shortage of gas in past, nor will it happen in future, says power minister

Union Power Minister RK Singh on Sunday assured that the national capital is being supplied the required amount of electricity and it will continue. The statement by the union minister comes in the backdrop of an energy crisis looming over some states, including Delhi and Punjab, due to a combination of factors, such as excess rainfall hitting coal movement and imported coal-based power plants generating less than half of their capacity due to record-high rates. 

After chairing a meeting with the Ministry of Power and discoms, RK Singh today said, “The panic ensued after GAIL sent informed Bawana gas power plant that it will stop supplying gas after two days because their contract was about to expire.” 

“I’ve asked GAIL CMD, who participated in today’s meeting, to continue required supplies,” Singh said. 

Commenting on what the GAIL CMD said, Singh said, “He has assured me that the supplies will continue. Neither there was any shortage of gas in the past, nor will it happen in the future.”

“In effect, neither there was, nor there is any crisis. It was created unnecessarily.”

Coal crisis: Power minister warns Tata Power CEO of action

Speaking further, Power Minister RK Singh today said he has warned the Tata Power CEO of action if they send baseless SMSs to customers that can create panic.

“I’ve warned Tata Power CEO of action if they send baseless SMSs to customers that can create panic. Messages by GAIL and Tata Power qualify as acts of irresponsible behaviour,” the union minister said. 

Speaking on the coal reserve, the union minister said, “We have an average coal reserve (at power stations) that can last for more than 4 days. The stock is replenished every day. I am in touch with (Union Minister for Coal & Mines) Pralhad Joshi,” Singh said. 

The power minister also took a jibe at the Congress party’s ideas on the alleged crisis and said, “Unfortunately, the Congress party has run out of votes and therefore they are running out of ideas as well.”

The coal crisis

While power producers and distributors have warned of blackouts as generation units are running coal as low as two days, the Coal Ministry has said the country has adequate coal stocks and low inventory doesn’t mean generation will stop as stock is being continuously replenished.

Tata Power, which has signed contracts to supply 1,850 MW of electricity to Gujarat, 475 MW to Punjab, 380 MW to Rajasthan, 760 MW to Maharashtra and 380 MW to Haryana from its imported coal-based power plant at Mundra in Gujarat, has stopped generation.

Adani Power’s Mundra unit too is facing a similar problem.

Power plants across the country regulated generation after stock ran low. Against the requirement of maintaining 15 days to 30 days of stocks, over half of the country’s 135 coal-fired power plants, which in total supply around 70 per cent of the nation’s electricity, have fuel stocks of less than two days, as per the data from the grid operator.

The Coal Ministry, however, said the stocks being reported by power plants is rolling stock, which means stocks are being replenished on a day-by-day basis.

Also Read | After Delhi, Punjab, now Kerala mulls power cut in wake of coal crisis

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