Lanco Infratech Ltd has urged the ministries of power and coal to provide long term coal linkages for its super thermal power project of 1,000 megawatts each at Chattisgarh, Hirakud (Orissa) and Jharkhand.
Power Ministry officials said coal linkages were now governed by guidelines which the Coal Ministry can invoke to take decisions, without looking for case-by-case approvals from the Power Ministry.
In a letter written to the ministries of coal and power, the Hyderabad-based power major has said that in the first phase of the project, it proposes to implement 1000 MW and a long term allocation of coal would provide impetus to ensure commissioning of the power plant during the Eleventh Five-Year Plan that starts next year.
"We have made substantial progress in the project development process such as application for land and allocation of water and detailed environmental study of the sites…and with long-term coal linkages…assure you that we shall commission the project well within the stipulated schedule."
A senior official in the Coal Ministry, who did not wish to be identified, said that the Coal Ministry has already written to the Power Ministry that it was inclined to give long-term linkages to power companies. He pointed that the Power Ministry from time to time has communicated its approach and recommendations for allocation of coal linkages or coal blocks to power utilities.
"Keeping in view the recent developments and experience gained this has been reviewed and comprehensive guidelines for providing linkages and allotment of captive coal blocks have been approved," says a note from the Power Ministry to the coal secretary.
It adds, "These guidelines will apply to all future allocation of coal linkages and coal blocks for power projects including also the pending requests/applications/proposals for coal blocks/coal linkages."
Power Ministry officials pointed out that keeping in view the guidelines, the proposal of Lanco Infratech falls under the category of merchant power plants which want linkages for power plants upto a capacity of 1,000 MW and captive coal block allotment for plants in the range of 500 to 1,000 MW capacity.
"Therefore there is no need for specific recommendation on a case-by-case basis by the Ministry of Power and the Coal Ministry can take care of the issue," said a senior Power Ministry official.