NTPC to build 4,000mw thermal plant in Karnataka

Bangalore, Nov 4 (IANS) State-run power utility NTPC Thursday signed a power purchasing agreement with distribution companies in Karnataka for its proposed 4,000 MW super critical thermal power plant at Kudgi in Bijapur district of north Karnataka, about 550 km from here.

‘We have entered into power purchase agreement (PPA) with the electricity distribution companies (escoms) in Karnataka for supplying energy from the 4,000 MW new thermal power project at Kudgi when commissioned in two stages,’ NTPC Chairman and Managing Director Arup Roy Choudhury told reporters here.

To be built at an estimated Rs.24,000 crore (Rs.240 billion), the ultra mega power plant will have five units of 800 MW each when fully commissioned.

‘We are waiting for the land acquisition process to be completed by the state government. Once the required 3,500 acres of land is handed over to us, we will start the project work and plan to commission first three units of 2400 MW within 40 months from zero date,’ said Roy Choudhury.

The other two units generating 1,600 MW will be built in the second stage subsequently.

The state government has notified the land for acquisition and paid Rs.102 crore to the Karnataka Industrial Area Development Board (KIADB) for buying the land from farmers and other title holders.

NTPC has already paid Rs.26 crore to the KIADB towards the partial cost of the land.

‘The entire land has been notified for acquisition and the Bijapur deputy commissioner is negotiating with the land owners for fixing the revised compensation. We will initially acquire about 2,000 acres for kick-starting the project and initiate the process for the remaining 1,500 acres in due course’ said V.P. Balaigar, state industry department’s principal secretary.

Of the total land, about 1,900 acres will be earmarked for the main plant, 1,100 acres for the ash pond and 250 acres for the township.

As the host state, though Karnataka is entitled to 35 percent of the total power generated by the thermal plant, Power Minister Shobha Karandlaje said the state government had petitioned the Union power ministry to allot about 80 percent as the state’s share to bridge the growing demand-supply gap.

Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa, who was present on the occasion, hoped the ground-breaking ceremony for the first stage of the ambitious project would take place in January 2011 and the first unit commissioned by December 2014.

NTPC plans to tie up with Western Coalfields Ltd in Maharashtra and South Eastern Coalfields in Chattisgarh for sourcing coal.

The state government has committed to supply five thousand million cubic feet (tmc) of water to the power project from Almatti dam across the Krishna river in the northern district.

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