In a statement issued here today, PEP President and Bholath MLA Sukhpal Singh Khaira urged Navjot Sidhu to take charge of the Power portfolio and reopen the dishonestly entered into PPA’s with private thermal plant companies, by the junior Badal.
Khaira said this immoral and corrupt action of the junior Badal had not only landed the PSPCL in a financial mess but has badly burdened ordinary consumers with most expensive electricity tariffs in the country.
Khaira said that the SAD-BJP government had signed PPAs with Sterlite company for a 1,980 MW Talwandi Sabo thermal plant, with Larsen and Toubro for 1,400 MW Rajpura thermal plant and with GVK for 500 MW Goindwal Sahib thermal plant.
He alleged that by doing so the previous government had agreed to pay them exceptionally high fixed charges per unit, as compared to other thermal plants across the country with similar capacity and technology.
Khaira said Punjab was paying fixed charges at Rs 1.35 per unit to Talwandi Sabo plant, Rs 1.50 per unit to Rajpura plant and Rs 1.93 per unit to Goindwal Sahib plant. However, fixed charges for Mundra thermal plant in Gujarat were 90 paisa per unit and for Sasan thermal plant in Madhya Pradesh was 17 paisa per unit only.
Then Minister for renewable energy and PEDA Bikram Singh Majithia and Power Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal had also signed PPAs with solar and bio-mass power plants at exorbitant prices, Khaira alleged.
He said as per the Punjab State Electricity Regulatory Commission tariff order, Punjab is to pay Rs 1,010 crore for 1,712 million units (MUs) solar power at Rs 5.90 per unit during 2017-18. At the same time, the state has to pay Rs 776 crore for 1,459 MUs power from bio-mass plants which come out to Rs 5.32 per unit.
Khaira further alleged that the Badals had deliberately not operationalized the Pachhwara coal mine in Jharkhand allotted since April 2015, in order to oblige the Adanis as his companies import coal at exorbitant prices, causing losses to the tune of hundreds of crores to the exchequer. He said it led to purchase of coal and power from private thermal plants and other private players at higher prices.
He also alleged that the Badals had appointed K D Chaudhri as the PSPCL chairman for seven years and that he had acted as the henchman, causing immense financial loss to the state exchequer.
Khaira said Navjot Sidhu by reviewing and subsequently scrapping erroneously done PPA’s with private thermal players can not only save Punjab from further financial mess, give relief to people of the state but can also prove his point that Capt. Amarinder Singh and the Badals are playing a friendly match, as both have turned a blind eye to each other’s corrupt practices.