NEW DELHI: The government on Saturday said it would not be possible to give more coal to power generator companies (Gencos) other than on a proportional basis to make up any shortfall. The power ministry in a circular said it has been monitoring the coal supply situation in the country and has been taking steps to ensure adequate coal supply and coal stocks based on the domestic coal received from Coal India Limited (CIL), Singareni Collieries Company Limited (SCCL) and Captive coal mines.
The domestic coal supply to all Gencos will be in proportion to the coal received from CIL/SCCL for all the Gencos. The circular noted that production in captive coal mines allotted to power plants may be maximized to the limit permitted.“It has been reported that a number of power plants are taking much longer time than the prescribed norms in unloading coal from railway rakes which is affecting the turn-around time,” the ministry said.
“CEA has been asked to monitor the unloading time at power plants and it has been decided that a lesser number of rakes would be made available to such power plants where there is slackness in prompt unloading of coal from rakes,” the ministry added in a statement. This step has been taken with the objective of maximizing the utilization of available railway rakes.
Therefore, this aspect may be monitored at the level of State government and unloading of coal may be ensured within the given norms. In October 2021, the country faced a major coal crisis, raising concern about a possible electricity shortage in the country.
The coal stock at the power plants depleted to 7.2 Million Tonnes (MT) as of 8 October 2021. The government blamed it on increased demand of power, less power generation by imported coal-based power plants and some interruption in supply of coal due to heavy rains.