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A week after sounding a warning, NTPC, a joint venture partner of the Tamil Nadu Electricity Board (TNEB), has stopped supply of 1,000MW power from its two thermal plants in Vallur to the state power utility owing to nonpayment of `1,156 crore in dues.
On Wednesday, the joint ture company in which venture company in which TNEB has 50% stake, stopped power supply to Tangedco as well as other power distribution companies in the southern states. There are three units of 500MW each at Vallur from where Tangedco gets nearly 70% of the generated power.
Apart from Tamil Nadu, Vallur power is supplied to Puducherry, Karnataka and Telangana also. Coal for the units is supplied partly by Coal India Limited. The rest of the required coal is imported from Indonesia and other countries. When all the three units run, Tamil Nadu gets 1,050 MW from Vallur alone. Along with the loss of 500MW of power from unit 1 of Kudankulam, which has been shut for refuelling, the total power shortfall for Tangedco is 1,550MW .
“We have credit of 60 days from the Vallur units. Of the total `1,56.05 crore due to the joint venture firm, only `400 crore is pending for more than 60 days. We will first pay `400 crore. The balance will be paid after a few other issues are settled with the company," said a senior Tangedco official.
Meanwhile, questions are being raised as to whether Tangedco will be able to meet the growing power demand for summer. "As of now, we have good wind power generation.The cost of wind power is much lower than thermal power -`5.10 per unit. There will be no problem in meeting the power demand as within a few days, wind energy generation will improve," said the official.
In an unrelated development at midnight on Wednesday, a failure in the Manali Mylapore power distribution line left localities like Teynampet, Nandanam, Mylapore, Nungambakkam, Triplicane, Sowcarpet and most parts of north Chennai without power. Electricity minister P Thangamani said 200 Tamil Nadu Electricity Board workers were carrying out repair work and power would be restored in phases area-wise.
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