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Himachal to frame new energy policy: Chief Minister

IANS | May 16, 2023 05:00 PM

SHIMLA: Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Sukhvinder Sukhu said the government is planning to frame a new energy policy with an aim to provide more share to the state in hydropower projects.

The Chief Minister said under the new policy, the provision of deferment of free power royalty will be completely abolished by ending the relaxation given earlier. He said there would be a provision to give 15 per cent share to the state for the first 12 years, 20 per cent for the next 18 years and 30 per cent for the next 10 years.

"Efforts would be made to increase the state's share in those projects which have recovered its cost, for which correspondence would be initiated with the central government and other PSUs, " said Sukhu.

He said for all upcoming hydel power projects, the land would be given for a 40-year lease as per the policy of the government.

The Chief Minister took a serious note of central PSUs for not signing pre-implementation and implementation agreements to set up hydropower projects and directed the Energy Department to issue notices.

Besides, he also directed to simplify the process of providing non-objection certificates (NOCs) for the construction of hydropower projects.

Sukhu said 172 hydropower projects of 11, 149.50 MW capacity have been commissioned in the state, while 58 projects of 2, 454 MW capacity were under construction.

He said there should not be unnecessary delay in the hydropower projects being constructed through various undertakings of the state and the Energy Department should develop a mechanism to monitor them.

He said the delay in construction of projects causes financial loss to the state. The Directorate of Energy would be strengthened and artificial intelligence would also be used to improve the functioning of the department.

The Chief Minister also reviewed the construction of solar projects being set up and issued directions to speed up the construction work.

The state has set a target of starting 500 MW solar power projects this year.

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