Kerala blames central government for its power woes

February 19th, 2008 - 12:08 am ICT by admin  

A file-photo of Manmohan Singh

New Delhi, Feb 18 (IANS) Facing an acute power shortage, Kerala Monday alleged that the central government had been “neglecting” the state’s demands for more allocation and has even cut down its share of power. “Kerala has not been getting its due share from the central pool. While the state was seeking more allocation, due for it from different southern power grid, the central government went on cutting down its allocation,” Kerala’s Power Minister A.K. Balan, who was in national capital to meet Union Power Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde, told reporters.

Balan said the centre has not yet reinstated 183 MW of electricity, which it had cut from its allocation in the last two years despite repeated requests from the state.

Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan had sought Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s intervention also. The centre had reduced 133 MW from its daily supply to the state in April last year and another 50 MW in December.

According to the state minister, the state electricity board has given 875,000 more connections since the Left Democratic Front government came to power in 2006.

“The state’s daily requirement is 2,800 MW but we have only 2,400 MW now,” Balan said, adding that Kerala, which had not had any power cuts last year, is in trouble now.

Balan alleged that Kerala had not received its due share from the ultra mega power projects in the country, which were supposed to contribute a percentage of its power production to the state too.

He said the centre has also not heeded the state’s demand for Liquid Natural Gas (LNG) supply for the thermal power projects in Kerala.

“The LNG which India had purchased from Australia was expected to come to Kerala. But it was given to Gujarat. The central government has been continuously neglecting the state,” Balan said.

“It would have been a great boon for the industrial development in the state,” he said.

Balan, who belongs to Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) that leads the government in the state, also reminded that the Left parties support the Congress-led government at the centre.

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