Vijayawada: The Cabinet sub-Committee that was appointed to probe into the Power Purchase Agreement (PPAs) signed during the previous TDP term will submit its report soon. It may be noted that the entire process was done in a hurry and that too at the fag-end of the term, putting a huge burden on the State exchequer.
In a matter of just 15 days, 41 PPAs were signed and the terms were heavily loaded in favour of the companies and there was every need to renegotiate the terms, Finance Minister Buggana Rajendranath Reddy said, adding that the government plans to come out with a detailed report.
Asserting that there has been no timeline fixed for the Committee, the Finance Minister, during Question Hour, said that all the data will be acquired and the report will be submitted soon. The Centre has written a letter to take action against irregularities in the PPAs.
“The dues of Discoms have increased from Rs 9,000 crore in 2014 to Rs 29, 000 crore in 2019 and we have cleared dues of Rs 4,900 crores”, the Finance Minister said.
Ruckus over PPAs rocks Question Hour
The winter session of the State Legislative Assembly began on Monday with the heated Question Hour being dominated on the power purchase agreements with heated arguments between the Treasury and Opposition benches.
Telugu Desam Party (TDP) sought immediate clarification on PPAs for renewable energy.
Although, Power Minister Balineni Srinivas Reddy was present in the House, it was Legislative Affairs and Finance Minister Buggana Rajendranath, who replied even as the opposition benches insisted that the concerned Minister clarify on the issue.
However, they were told that as it was the collective responsibility of the government the Finance Minister’s reply should suffice.
Amid din, the Speaker asked them to come at another appropriate forum as their query was posted for Question Hour.
Rajendranath Reddy said that the Gopala Reddy report is under consideration, while giving a crux of the PPAs, which he substantiated with statistics. He pointed out that it was the TD government that had hurriedly signed 41 MoUs. He made it clear that the State Government was not against renewable energy.
“High amounts need to paid for solar and wind energies, and fixed charges are to be paid for thermal power, for both consumed and left unconsumed. He added that the earlier government had ratified the PPAs in the Cabinet, though the then Principal Secretaries had objected.
“The DISCOMs have suffered a loss of Rs 9,000 crore in the 2014-15 fiscal, and by 2018-19, they had shot up to a staggering Rs 29,000 crore,” Buggana said and added that the State Government has paid Rs 4,900 crore to the DISCOMs last month.