UNION MINISTER for Heavy Industries Santosh Mohan Deb on Monday ended speculation about surrender of surplus land by the Bhopal unit of BHEL.
Addressing a press conference here, the Minister said that considering the growing demand for power, the company is seriously contemplating expansion.
“There is no plan to surrender land to the State Government,” he said, adding the Union Cabinet was discussing expansion of BHEL activities. He said that apart from the MP Government, BHEL staff, ex-employees, builders and industrialists were demanding land.
Referring to the land given by the BHEL to the State for setting up of an All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), the Union Minister said, “We have already surrendered land to the State Government and the latter is demanding more though no significant progress was made on AIIMS front”. In fact, the land given by BHEL is bigger than that on which the AIIMS, Delhi, is situated.
Asked about the Power Ministry’s proposal for setting up a BHEL clone, Deb said his ministry would oppose the move. “The company has enough potential to meet the power requirement of the country and there is no need to set up a BHEL clone.”
On the company’s plans, BHEL Chairman and Managing Director A K Puri said generating capacity expansion was in progress. BHEL was expanding equipment capacity and product range to manufacture 660 MW and 800 MW sets, he added.
He said capacity augmentation of hydro sector was under way in the Bhopal unit where capacity would be increased from 720 kv to 2500 kv.