Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Nov 29:
Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik today urged Union Coal Minister Piyush Goyal to allocate Chhendipada and Chhendipada-II coal blocks in favour of Odisha Thermal Power Corporation Ltd (OTPCL).
OTPCL is setting up a 3200 MW super critical coal-based thermal power plant at Kamakhyanagar in Dhenkanal district for which the project authorities have completed land acquision and conducted public hearing. All the statutory clearances have been obtained except environmental clearance which is pending.
Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik requested to cancel the Tentuloi coal block allocated to OTPCL.
“The Tentuloi coal block was allocated to OTPCL as there was no alternative available at that point of time. The cost of extracting coal from the deep cast mine will be prohibitively high for which the Ministry of Coal has been requested several times for cancelation of the same,” said the Chief Minister.
He said the project authorities had applied for the two coal blocks– Chhendipada and Chhendipada-II—to meet the coal requirement of 16 MT per annum. These blocks have not been allocated to anyone so far.
“The state has one of the largest deposits of power grade coal in the country. The demand for power is growing rapidly due to increased coverage of households and higher consumptions. We are, therefore, setting up this major project in the public sector for the benefit of people of the state. Allocation of these coal blocks to OTPCL will help in making available power at a cheap rate for the consumers of Odisha,” Patnaik wrote in the letter.