Mangalore, Oct 29, 2014: Speaking after inaugurating ‘Swarna Soudha’, of Karnataka Electricity Board (KEB) Engineers’ Association on the occasion of its golden jubilee celebrations, at Kavoor here on October 28, Tuesday, Minister for Energy D K Shivakumar exhorted all party leaders and people of Coastal district to identify land for the implementation of proposed ultra mega power project. He said that residents of Niddodi have expressed opposition to the setting up of ultra mega power projects.
Commenting the allegation that the UPCL had not adhered to the promises on environmental issues, the Minister said that the government will call a meeting within 15 days to discuss the issue. Government will ensure that the company follows the promises it had made to the government. “I am not arguing in favour of Niddodi thermal power plant. Sea route is more convenient for the transportation of coal than rail route. To transport one tonne of coal, the cost is Rs 2,000, an expensive matter. So, both the UPA and the NDA governments thought of setting up a ultra mega thermal power plant near the sea,” he said.
To address the shortage of power in the state, the energy department has decided to give emphasis to solar energy. About 1,000 mega watt generated through solar power will be added to the grid. The energy department will support those who wish to set up power units in the state and interested to supply 24 hours of electricity.
Round the clock power : The Minister said that as the consumers in Dakshina Kannada and Udupi districts pay electricity bills promptly, the government is committed to supply 24-hour electricity to the coastal districts. The government will recruit 6,000 linemen within four to five months. The decision on the recruitment will be taken at a board meeting within 15 days, he added. Earlier, MP Nalin Kumar Kateel urged the Energy Minister to solve the Niddodi power project problem. KEB Engineers Association President Venkatashiva Reddy urged to create new posts according to stations and recruit ANT officers under KPTCL.
District-in –Charge Minister B Ramanath Rai, MLA Mohiuddin Bava, Mayor Mahabala Marla, Energy Department Additional Chief Secretary P Ravikumar, KPTCL MD Kumar Naik, KPTCL Director Sumanth, Mescom Managing Director Chikkananjappa were present.