May 29: Coal India is planning to have its first ever thermal power plant setup in the state of Odisha. The 1600-MW pithead plant will be set up by Mahanadi Coalfields Ltd (MCL), the subsidiary of coal India, under a joint venture with power producer NTPC Ltd.
MCL will offer NTPC up to 49 per cent stake in the power plant, which is estimated to cost around Rs 13000 crore. Coal India Chairman A K Jha has been quoted as saying that initial discussions were already been carried out with NTPC, who have shown interest in setting up the plant at Odisha’s Sundergarh district. He said that MCL will have to retain 51% stake in the power plant owing to legal problem as licenses are under MCL’s name.
Jha said that unless 51 per cent stake is retained, there will legal problem as all the licenses are in MCL’s name. The project will have a capacity of 1600 MW (2×800 MW). Existing power purchase agreements will be used by NTPC for the plant, which will be garnering coals from Basundhara area in Sundergarh district.
In addition to the one at Sundergarh, MCL is also planning to setup another pithead power plant at North Karanpura under Central Coalfields Ltd in Jharkand. The project according to Mr Jha is in the consultancy phase, while the Sundergarh power plant has cleared all the formalities and had also got the clearance from High Level Clearance Authority, the apex body for investment approvals in the state.
MCL is predicting a capex of Rs 9500 crore for the current fiscal. However, Jha said that the expenditure plan could go up by around Rs 1000-2000 crore with the pithead power plant at Sundergarh gathering steam.