April 13, 2015: For the first time in the North Eastern region of India, especially in Assam, Ministry of Power, Govt. of India is organising a 2-day conference of Power, Renewable Energy and Mines Ministers of States and UTs. The Conference took off at The Assam Administrative Staff College, Guwahati, which was inaugurated by Piyush Goyal, Union Minister of State (IC) for Power, Coal and NRE.
In his inaugural address, Piyush Goyal said, “The Government is committed to provide affordable, 24 x 7 power to all households by 2019. An efficient, resilient and financially healthy power sector is essential for growth and poverty reduction. The availability of quality, reliable and affordable power helps in the rapid socio-economic growth of the country especially the backward region”. Goyal said that, the Government has launched Deendayal Upadhyay Gram Jyoti Yojana (DDUGJY) with the objective of separating agriculture and non agriculture feeders to facilitate Discoms in the judicious rostering of supply to agricultural and non-agricultural consumers, strengthening and augmentation of sub-transmission and distribution infrastructure including metering in Rural areas and rural electrification including micro grid and off grid distribution network. The scheme is an improvement over the previous programmes as it provides cafeteria approach to the States in prioritizing their needs rather than a straight jacketed approach of ‘One Size Fits All’.
Goyal said, “All states should sort out the procurement to generate more power. It will give all the States employment opportunities as well as power. We have specially taken a big CSR initiative as we are going to establish 5 cancer hospitals in coal mining areas in the country.”
The Minister expressed great satisfaction that during 2014-15 against the target of 20882 ckm of transmission lines and 47871MVA of transmission capacity have been 22100ckm and 65554 MVA respectively, which is the highest achievement ever in a year. Emphasizing on the efficient use of energy, Goyal said that Domestic lighting and Street Lighting system is already progressing towards efficiency through utmost use of LED lights.
Goyal said that his Ministry has recently concluded e-auction of 29 coal mines in 2 phases. The total proceeds from the coal mines auction cave crossed Rs. 1.93 lac crore surpassing CAG estimate of Rs 1.86 lac crore losses on account of allocation of 206 captive coal blocks without auction since 1993. On major initiatives and achievements, the Minister said there is huge increase in thermal based electricity, doubling the coal production to 100 crore tons by 2020, more than One Lac Twenty Five Thousand (1,25,000) toilets for schools will be constructed as part of Swach Bharat Abhiyan, the Minister said.
Piyush Goyal said, “The Government has embarked on Rs. 100 billion project, to serve all North Eastern Region.” On Subansiri Project, he hoped that “A consensus would emerge among stakeholders for speedy implementation as this would expand opportunities to all especially irrigation, job creation, and affordable power to all. Accept it as a shared responsibility.” The Minister said this conference is a demonstration of true co-operative federalism.
The two day conference is being attended by Power, Renewable Energy and Mines Ministers from 23 States and UTs.
Earlier the three secretaries of Ministries, Power, Coal and New and Renewable Energy gave powerpoint presentation on their respective Ministries.