India’s largest generation utility NTPC has produced 4.67% more power in the 11 months of the current financial year than the previous financial year, underlining government data showing the economy growing at a healthy 7% in the fourth quarter in spite of demonetisation of high-value notes in November.
“Electricity cannot be stored. So if generation has risen, consumption is coming from somewhere – domestic use, manufacturing or farming. It is well known that industrial activity makes up the bulk of power consumption. Mind you, generation has grown in spite of an annual energy saving of about 4,000 MW from the LED bulb programme,” a power ministry official told TOI on Tuesday.
TOI had on January 27 first reported that key segments of the mines and mineral industries, which provide raw material for a range of manufacturing activities, remained unaffected by demonetisation and posted a sharp increase in output in the November-December period which overlapped with scrapping of currency notes of Rs 1,000 and Rs 500.
Data available till January from the coal and mines ministries were well supported by a record rise in electricity generation and bill collection by state distribution companies, indicating that demonetisation had failed to kill the economy’s appetite for energy – considered a bellweather for industrial activities.
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