Advani tells Karnataka to emulate Gujarat in power sector (With: Karnataka’s first 500 MW thermal plant goes on stream)

November 3rd, 2008 - 8:56 pm ICT by IANS  

Bharatiya Janata PartyBellary (Karnataka), Nov 3 (IANS) The Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) prime ministerial candidate L.K. Advani Monday advised the Karnataka government to emulate Gujarat in achieving self-sufficiency in power generation and providing electricity to all villages round the clock.”Karnataka, which is also ruled by BJP, should follow the Gujarat government in meeting the growing demand for power and ensuring 24-hour quality power to all villages across the state,” Advani said after dedicating to the nation the first 500 MW Bellary thermal power plant at Kudatini, about 22 km from this mining town.

Referring to the success of the Jyotigram Yojana, a rural electrification programme, in Gujarat for supplying quality power in all villages without load-shedding or power cuts, Advani said the western state had become a model worth emulating to provide energy in rural areas of Karnataka.

“Karnataka will be recognised in the country as Gujarat is for its uniform power supply scheme across the state, especially in rural areas where every village is provided power for all the 24 hours,” Advani said addressing about 10,000 people gathered at the venue.

Calling upon the first BJP government in the south to focus on infrastructure development spanning roads, power, irrigation and transportation, the opposition leader in the Lok Sabha said uniform socio-economic growth would check migration of people from rural to urban areas in search of jobs, livelihood and other opportunities.

“The urban chaos witnessed in many parts of the country is a grim reminder of the consequences that would befall any state when growth or infrastructure development is lop-sided or confined to cities at the cost of uniform growth in semi-urban and rural areas,” Advani asserted.

Referring to the ill-effects of global warming and climate change due to greenhouse gases, he urged the state government to promote clean power generation by tapping wind, solar and renewable energy sources.

“You should enact clean power legislation as in Germany where 30 percent of the power generated is from green energy sources such as biomass and hydel,” Advani told Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa and Power Minister K.S. Eshwarappa on the occasion.

In his address, Yeddyurappa admitted the state was facing serious difficulty in meeting the increasing demand for power from all sectors spanning industry, commercial, agriculture and housing.

“As energy is critical for the socio-economic growth and a measure of infrastructure development in the state, we are committed to increase power generation capacity to 14,000 MW from 6,000 MW currently in the 11th Five-Year Plan.

The state-run Karnataka Power Corporation Ltd (KPCL), which has built the Bellary thermal plant at a cost of Rs.21 billion, will build more thermal and hydel stations to generate about 5,000 MW over the next four years.

With the state exhausting hydel resources after generating the highest quantum of hydro-electric power in the country, accounting for about 60 percent of the total supply, KPCL is forced to go for thermal power projects at Gulbarga and Bijapur in addition to the existing Raichur thermal plant (1,470 MW) and two more thermal plants of 500 MW each at Bellary over the next four-five years.

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