Power reforms project about to miss deadline

Power reforms project about to miss deadline

Srinagar: A company that had been allotted the contract to install insulated aerial power cables in the state has merely begun the work, although the contract stipulates that the project had to be finished by March 2016.
The government of India’s two-phased Rs 1,600-crore Restructured-Accelerated Power Development and Reforms Program (R-APDRP) is aimed at preventing power thefts and transmission and distribution losses in 30 major towns across Jammu and Kashmir.
The reforms project is expected to bring down power losses, which have touched Rs 3913.50 crore during the financial year 2014-15.
The deficit would reach Rs 6949 crore by March end. The T&D losses have risen to above 50 per cent against the average of 30 per cent in India.
The project, which has been divided into two parts, entails setting up data and Information Technology applications for energy accounting, auditing and IT based consumer service centers, while the second part would include regular distribution strengthening reforms.
The R-APDRP program will cover 30 urban areas – towns and cities with a population of above 10,000.
In May 2014, the project was outsourced to the EMR Limited for laying insulated cables. However, the company has barely started the work, prompting the Power department to consider granting further time to the company.
Kashmir Reader has learnt the company has missed the deadline mainly because of its own fault, such as slow pace of work.
A source said the work completed by the company till now is almost negligible and the company has told the department that it would get the manpower by the end of this month.
Chief Engineer PDD Bashir Ahmad Khan blamed the 2014-floods for the company’s not meeting the deadline, while assuring the project would be completed by the end of this year.
Power development commissioner Sheikh Gul Ayaz said they have told the outsourcing agency to expedite the work so that the actual deadline November, which has been set by government of India, would be met.
“We expect the work will be completed by November. However, if there will be some delay, then we will have to seek extension. The project faced many hiccups but it has taken off now,” he said.

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