32 power companies to invest in Meghalaya

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Shillong, Nov 30 (UNI) At least 32 companies has shown their keen interest to invest in the power sector in Meghalaya, even as the state government planned to grant subsidy to the Meghalaya State Electricity Board(MeSEB) to meet its expenditure without taxing the consumers.

Deputy Chief Minister, who is also in-charge of the Power portfolio, Dr Mukul M Sangma told news persons here today that 32 power companies, including JP Group of Companies, Jindal, Essar, Athena and other big industries, have submitted Expressions of Interest (EoI) for investment in the state's power sector.

In this regard, the MeSEB had been entrusted with the task of conducting the study and preparing the Detailed Project Estimate(DPR) to tap the generation of power resources.

Informing that the MeSEB had incurred a loss of Rs 22 crore during this fiscal period, for purchasing power when the state was reeling under acute power shortage,the Power minister said.

''If the board had not resorted to power cuts, it would have suffered losses of nearly Rs 75 crore for purchasing power from outside agencies,'' Dr Sangma, asserting that the state was yet to recover dues worth several crores of rupees from Assam as well as various state government departments.

The Deputy Chief Minister said that the government's proposal to hike the power tariff to 110 per cent was mainly due to losses incurred by the board in purchasing power.

Dr Sangma, however, said that the state government was also planning to grant subsidy to the board to tide over the losses without taxing the consumers.

Earlier, there had been strong opposition from NGOs and the public regarding the proposed new tariff, as the consumers had to suffer the burden of the hike in power tariff.

UNI

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