Development makes way for power at ITO
The ambitious ITO redevelopment project, involving redevelopment of Rajghat and Indra Prastha (IP) Extension coal-based power plant, has been scrapped. Two gas-based power plants, each capable of producing up to 750 MW, are slated to be built at Rajghat and IP Extension.
The Delhi State Industrial and Infrastructure Development Corporation (DSIIDC) had proposed to redevelop the Rajghat and IP extension power plants and construct government offices, commercial space, hotels, manmade lake, and a 26-acre city forest at a cost of Rs 1,200 crore. The project involved development of 14 lakh sq ft of office space. The total commercial valuation of the real estate space so created would have run into more than Rs 6,000 crore. Sources confirmed to The Sunday Standard that meetings were held between Power Minister Haroon Yusuf, DSIIDC officials, power department officers, and Lieutenant Governor Tejinder Singh, who heads the Delhi Development Authority (DDA), to see if the use of the land on which the power plant is situated could be changed from industrial to commercial. It was decided that changing the land use of the Rajghat and the IP Extension power plant would be a difficult exercise, hence the project was scrapped.
“A key bureaucrat who was pushing for the ITO redevelopment project got transferred. He was the one co-ordinating between various government departments to see that the land use issue can be resolved,” a senior official in the state power ministry told The Sunday Standard. “He also briefed Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit on the project. But he got transferred recently, following which the whole project lost steam. Then it ran all the way downhill,” he added.
When asked what does the government plan to do with the land now, the bureaucrat said, the coal-based plants cause a lot of pollution and cannot be allowed to run in the capital, hence they would be shut down. “Both the power plants would be converted from coal-based power plants to gas-based ones. Each power plant would produce up to 750 MW watts of electricity. Hence the production of power from both the plants at Rajghat and IP Extension would total 1,500 MW,” the officer said.
The bureaucrat further stated that gas-based plants take much less space compared to coal-based ones. Moreover, the government is shifting highly polluting industries from the capital, according to the master plan 2021.
After the recent outage of power in all of north India due to grid failure, Sheila Dikshit demanded that the Capital be ‘islanded’ since many important installations are situated in Delhi. Hence, even in the event of grid failure the capital would have uninterrupted power supply. For this purpose, Delhi should generate its own power. The new power plants proposed at Raj Ghat and IP Extension power plant land would help the state government its own power and not depend on the power grid for most of its power supply.
- Sunday Standard