Nitish infuses energy into his election campaign
By Ajay Kumar - PATNA:
Published: 26th Aug 2012 12:45:13 PM
Nitish has decided to fight the next power game in Bihar on the issue of power.
On Independence Day, he threw a great surprise when he announced he would not seek vote in the next Assembly election if he fails to provide electricity in the whole state.
This is really a great challenge to convert the most power deficient state into a power surplus state.
Some may consider it as hyperbolic announcement to capture media space but those who know him closely know it very well that this seasoned politician does serious homework before going to public.
The state currently generates only 586.
10 MW of power and gets allocation of 1,233 MW from Centre.
The per capita power consumption is only 122.11 KWH.
Whereas, power consumption in a state like Gujarat is 1615 KWH—certainly a huge gap.
It’s almost certain that power would be a key issue in the coming assembly elections.
Bihar would get 50 percent share in the power generated at NTPC’s Bihar-based Barh super thermal power station in stage II (2x660 MW).
The state would get its share from date of its commercial generation.
Stage I would start in January and Stage II would commence in the month of December.
Bihar will get 523 MW from stage I as 26.42 percent of its share.
So, the total would be 1183 MW and the current Central allocation is 1833 MW.
Two more units at Barauni and Kanti thermal power would add another 1000 MW.
Another power project at Nabinagar would take off in the second half of 2015.
It would also add another 660 MW.
The government also signed agreement with private players like Essar power for 750 MW.
According to the latest energy survey of Central Electricity Authority (CEA), Bihar’s energy demand would touch around 3,777MW power by 2014.
If everything goes in a planned way, the state would have more than 4000 MW before 2015.
If this happens, Kumar would definitely sell this as his major achievement in next assembly elections as he sailed smoothly in the last election on road and bridge construction issues.
But the moot question is corruption ridden electricity board which hardly collects 40 percent of its revenue losing about 3.5 crores every day.
It may further accumulate unsustainable losses if some major corrective measures are not undertaken.
While reacting on Nitish announcement his arch political rival Lalu Yadav said in a lighter vain “The Prime Minister has already announced power for all in his speech, so it’s just only a publicity gimmick”.
In other states BSP (bijali, sadak and pani) helped political parties gain power.
Pani is not a big problem in the state.
Bijli (power) can pave Nitish’s way to power.