Coal town hope for power relief soon


The coal capital’s power woes, centred around a shortfall of 60MW, could be resolve within the next three months as efforts are on to fix a 250MW power grid sub-station that could not be commissioned due to pending forest clearances.

According to highly placed sources in Jharkhand Urja Sancharan Limited, the distribution arm of the state power conglomerate, an NOC has been received for laying cables from the sub-station at Kandra in Govindpur, and hook it up with the Dumka power grid.

Work on laying cables and erecting towers, the sources said, would begin on June 17 and be completed by July 17. Similarly, work to lay cables and erect towers to connect the Kandra sub-station with the Lalpania power grid of Tenughat Vidyut Nigam (TVNL) in Bokaro is likely to the completed within tree months.

A senior official at Jharkhand Urja Sancharan said once the work was over, the Kandra sub-station would be able to draw around 50MW from the Dumka grid. The remaining 10 MW could be sourced from TVNL’s Lalpania grid.

Currently, Dhanbad gets around 212MW from Damodar Valley Corporation (DVC) instead of the required 272MW, leading to a shortfall of around 60MW.

“In fact, we can draw any amount of power from the Lalpania power grid of TVNL, ranging from the required 10MW to a maximum of 200 MW, during complete disruption of power supply from DVC,” said Jharkhand Bijli Vitran Nigam (JBVNL) superintending engineer Vinay Kumar.

Dhanbad in-charge GM of JBVNL Amarnath Jha said they would be able to provide 24-hour power supply to Dhanbad once the Kandra power grid sub-station was operational, thereby reducing dependence on DVC.

“A shortfall of around 50MW will be met. Other issues affecting power supply due to dependence on DVC, like frequent load-shedding and delayed fault repair, would also be taken care of once the power grid sub-station is ready,” he told the media on Monday after a meeting with Congress leaders led by district president Brajendra Prasad Singh, who lodged a complaint with him about the dismal power situation.

Then energy minister Rajendra Singh had laid the foundation of the sub-station at Kandra Industrial Area in Govindpur in December 2013 in the presence of then animal husbandry minister Mannan Mallick and former Tundi MLA Mathura Prasad Mahto.

But mandatory forest clearances, required for felling trees to pave the way for laying cables and erecting towers to connect the Kandra sub-station with Dumka and Lalapnia power grids did not come, thereby delaying the project.

Currently, JBVNL draws around 212 MW from six feeders of DVC: Putki for Dhanbad and Katras, Patherdih for Jharia and its surrounding areas, Bhetia for suburban areas of Dhanbad town, Kumardubi for Kumbardhubi and its surrounding areas like Chirkunda, and Maithon for Nirsa, Mugma and its surrounding areas.

But recurring faults in the feeder sub-stations have led to a perennial power crisis for which JBVNL has been receiving flak from residents of the region.

“While the connection with the Dumka power grid will help to immediately draw around 50 MW, the connection with the Lalpania power grid of TVNL, which is also connected to the national power grid in Bihar, will help to draw more power to meet the requirement,” explained the official.