Difficult to cut power tariff in Maharashtra: Gadkari

  • Pradip Kumar Maitra, Hindustan Times, Nagpur
  • Updated: Jan 17, 2015 20:56 IST

It will be difficult for the Devendra Fadnavis-led government to lower power tariff in Maharashtra, Nitin Gadkari, Union minister for transport and shipping, said on Saturday.

Speaking at an interactive session – Possible mineral-based industries in Vidarbha – in Nagpur, Gadkari said he had discussed Maharashtra’s electricity woes with power minister Chandrashekhar Babankule, and learnt that all power companies in the state were in poor financial health.

“The government is exploring options, such as revoking the open access surcharge and linking power plants to coal mines located close to them,” said Gadkari. The government was planning a port at Dahanu where imported coal will be offloaded and sent to the nearby power plants of Nashik and Bhusawal, the Union minister said.

Several industrialists at the session pointed out a major reason for factories not coming up in Vidarbha was the ‘exorbitant’ power tariff.

Union minister for steel and mines Narendra Singh Tomar, who presided over the function, said his ministry was considering roping in the private sector for carrying out more mining exploration in the country.

“We have not received the expected results in mining exploration in the last 66 years, while China and South Africa carried out more than double the work in this sector in a short span,” he said.

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