The Congress on Thursday attacked the BJP for “destroying” state-owned power sector to benefit select private power producers.
“Their claim that Gujarat is a power surplus state is incorrect. They have made Gujarat a major power purchasing state. That too from just handful of private power producers,” said Randeep Singh Surjewala, senior Congress leader.
“The culture of crony capitalism propagated by the BJP government can be gauged from the fact that in the last three years, 2013-14 to 2015-16, the state purchased electricity worth Rs 26,195 crore from four private power companies – Adani Power, Essar, Tata and China Light Power,” Surjewala said.
In all, Surjewala said that the Gujarat government had paid Rs 62,549 crore to private players between 2002-16 for power purchase.
He said the state-run power plants were being run at a plant load factor (PLF) of 33% to 38% in the same period.
The state-owned power units produced a mere 3,283 MW of power, compared with the installed capacity of 8,641 MW.
Surjewala claimed that during Congress rule, till 1995, the state-run power generation capacity was 4,345 MW and PLF ranged between 57% to 61.6%.
“This shows that after 22 years, state-run units are producing less electricity than even installed capacity when the Congress demitted power,” he said.
“The way government has procured power from the private players, it stinks of a planned scam.”
Surjewala also alleged that the state government had procured power at “unimaginably” high rates of Rs 24.67 per unit from private players, compared with Rs 2.88 per unit to Rs 3.17 per unit offered by NTPC.