The power utilities of Telangana have announced launch of 24×7 power supply to the agriculture sector across the State from February next.
Supply of round-the-clock power was introduced in three erstwhile districts of Karimnagar, Medak and Nalgonda on an experimental basis last week. The three combined districts have now divided into 10 administrative units to study technical feasibility. Put together, these districts have 9.85 lakh agriculture connections out of over 22 lakh in the State.
The uninterrupted supply to the agriculture sector in Medak, Sangareddy, Siddipet, Karimnagar, Sircilla, Jagityal, Peddapally, Nalgonda, Suryapet and Yadadri-Bhongir districts has increased the demand of power by 600 MW, taking the total to about 8,300 MW as on Monday, July 24. It is expected that the demand could notch over 11,000 MW when the consumption peaks.
“The power utilities are prepared to meet the demand even after the introduction of 24×7 supply to the farm sector all over the State and the transmission and distribution network was being strengthened with Rs. 1,600 crore investment,” Chairman and Managing Director of TS-Transco and TS-Genco D. Prabhakar Rao stated here on Monday. The demand of power was expected to be in the range of 13,500 MW to 14,000 MW when the uninterrupted supply would be provided to agriculture pumpsets across the State, although a section of farmers was favouring the existing nine-hour supply, fearing serious impact on the groundwater table, Mr. Rao said, adding that round-the-clock supply could also push up paddy cultivation this year.
Stating that the demand for power had increased by about 20% on account of 24-hour supply to farm connections in the three erstwhile districts, Mr. Prabhakar Rao said the peak demand was 6,890 MW on the same day (July 24) last year against 8,300 MW this year. Along with the CMDs of two discoms – TSSPDCL and TSNPDCL – he appealed to the farmers to remove auto-starters to save not only power but also precious water.
On bearing the cost for supply of 24×7 power to the farm sector the TS-Transco CMD said the State Government had promised to meet the burden in the form of subsidy.
Giving details of capacity addition, Mr. Prabhakar Rao said the 800 MW seventh unit of KTPS was expected to be synchronised with the grid in December this year and it would begin commercial operation in March next. Similarly, lighting up of boilers of two out of the 4×270 MW Bhadradri Thermal Power Station units would be done by March next and an additional 1,000 MW solar power would be added in the next six months, he said.