The West Bengal government on Thursday blamed the central government for the state’s solar park power project not taking off.
“The Centre will fund only those solar parks with a minimum capacity of 500 MW. But such a huge project requires a big stretch of land … at least 2,000 acres. It is difficult to get such huge plots as we have fragmented land. We can definitely reach the Centre’s target but not on one piece of land and hence we are missing out of their funds. I had discussed this with Central Power minister Piyush Goyal to ease out the norms for solar power project, but unfortunately we have got no response yet”, said Shovan Deb Chattopadhyay, state power minister at Confederation of Indian Industry’s (CII’s) Energy Conclave-2017 in Kolkata. He added that the state alone could not fund a project of this scale.
Chattopadhyay said the state government successfully provided power to 99.98 per cent of the population, compared to 2011 when this was only about which was about 54 per cent. The government has also planned to build two hundred substation in next two years in Bengal.
“My government wants to provide cheaper power to industries since sustainable energy is our policy and hence we provide subsidies of Rs 800 crore yearly to all,” he said.
Several eminent personalities including CII Chairman (Eastern) Umesh Chowdhury, Chairman and Managing Director (West Bengal State Electricity Distribution Company Limited) Rajesh Pandey, R.N.Sen Chairman (West Bengal Electricity Regulatory Authority) , Amitabh Mathur Director (BHEL) spoke at the conclave.