Upgradation of power infra


The inability of those at the helm of affairs in the Power Development Department in taking timely decision on certain important aspects has acted as road-block in the launch of over Rs 5000 crore worth two Centrally Sponsored Schemes and Prime Minister’s Development Package (PMDP) aimed at upgrading the power sector infrastructure in entire Jammu and Kashmir during the past over two years. Shockingly, nobody in this vital department is still in a position to specify any time-frame for roll out of the schemes and package as certain key issues are yet to be resolved by the concerned authorities. On July 25, 2015, Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Yojana (DDUGJY) to carry out power sector reforms in the rural areas with a view to ensure round the clock electricity supply to the rural households and farmers. Another scheme titled Integrated Power Development Scheme (IPDS), a new avatar of R-APDRP Scheme, was also launched for reduction of AT&C losses, up-gradation of infrastructure, IT based billing and auditing system and collection efficiency. Whopping funds were made available to all States including Jammu and Kashmir under these two schemes.
However, despite lapse of over two years neither DDUGJY and IPDS nor PMDP could be launched in the State due to inability of those at the helm of affairs in the Power Development Department to take timely decisions vis-à-vis allotment of works, while all other States have made substantial progress under two Centrally Sponsored Schemes, Jammu and Kashmir has even failed to complete the spade work for roll out of these schemes thereby depriving people of the benefit of the flagship programmes of the Union Government. The Power Development Department lost the period between July 2015 and January 2017 for floating one after another tender for allotment of works under DDUGJY and IPDS without analyzing the reasons behind poor response from the contractors. It was only in January 2017 that the Finance Minister Dr Haseeb Drabu came up with the statement that Government will rope in Central Public Sector Undertakings (CPSUs) for power infrastructure upgradation under DDUGJY and IPDS so as to avoid further delay in rolling out of these Centrally Sponsored Schemes. Neither the implementation charges could be settled with the PGCIL and REC till date despite lapse of several months nor Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed, which otherwise is a vital exercise to pave the way for start of work by the CPSUs, sources said, adding while these CPSUs want 9.50% implementation charges plus taxes the Power Development Department is still considering the same as exorbitant.

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