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Cos in fray for pvt transmission lines

Tatas, Essar, RIL and L&T are among the dozen companies in race to build India's first fully independent pvt power transmission lines.

india Updated: Apr 07, 2006 12:20 IST
Press Trust of India
Press Trust of India

Corporate giants Tatas, Essar, Reliance Energy and L&T are among the dozen companies in race to build India's first fully independent private power transmission lines in Gujarat and Maharashtra at an estimated investment of Rs 1,500 crore.

State-run transmission monopoly Power Grid Corporation of India, which had invited bids for the independent grid lines associated with western region strengthening scheme in November last year, will select the private company by June this year so as to complete the two projects by 2009.

"Tata Power, Reliance, Essar Power, Larsen & Toubro, GMR group, Kalptaru Power, Gammon India and Jyothi Structures, China Light & Power and four Spanish companies including Isolex Wat and Abengoa are in the fray for these projects," Power Grid Chairman and Managing Director RP Singh said.

Singh said a total of 28 bid documents were purchased and of those 12 companies participated in the pre-bid conference for each of these projects.

"We will have another pre-bid conference on April 18 and the bids would be opened in June this year," he said.

While one project is for building sub-stations and grid lines in southern Maharashtra at a cost of Rs 1,000 crore, the other will be set up in Gujarat at an investment of about Rs 500 crore.

When executed, these would be India's first transmission lines built fully by private players. PGCIL has so far formed joint ventures to build some grid lines. In fact, the only joint venture in transmission operational at present is between PGCIL and Tata Power to evacuate power from Tala hydroelectric project in Bhutan.

The regulator had in July 2005 turned down Reliance Energy's petition and divided the entire western grid scheme into four parts.

CERC had directed that PowerGrid either alone or in joint venture execute Part A and D, which entailed construction of 765 kv and 400 kv high-voltage transmission lines.

The other parts - B and C - were to be developed by 100 per cent equity participation of private firms, for which the regulator had asked Power Grid to conduct competitive bidding.

PGCIL had opted to go alone for Part A and D projects so as to finish them by 2008-09 and invited bids in November last year from private companies for the other two packages.

The western grid scheme involves construction of 800 circuit kms of 765 KV lines, 6,300 ckm of 400 KV lines, augmentation of 17 existing sub-stations, and setting up of four new sub-stations.

The scheme would benefit Maharashtra, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and union territories of Daman and Diu as well as Dadra and Nagar Haveli.

Part A is for absorbing import in eastern and central part of western grid with a total route ength of 1,381 km lines, Part B is for regional strengthening in southern Maharashtra with a route length of 970 ckm, Part C in Gujarat with a route length of 500 ckm and Part D in northern Madhya Pradesh with a route length of 1,040 kms.

First Published: Apr 06, 2006 12:56 IST