Electricity, prohibition and excise minister P Thangamani met Union minister of state for power, coal, new and renewable energy Piyush Goyal in New Delhi on Friday and urged him to release Rs 17,000 crore to enhance power infrastructure in the state. According to a press release, the minister requested the Centre to “release the amount of Rs 17,000 crore either as grant or as soft loan through PFC for carrying out the improvement works so that Chennai city will become cyclone and flood resilient”. These include works such as conversion of 230 KV transmission overhead lines into 230 KV underground cables. Referring to the damage to electrical infrastructure caused during cyclone Vardah, especially in Chennai city, the minister sought Rs 1,093.27 crore for carrying out restoration works.
Conversion of overhead lines into underground cables in the Chennai Corporation limits, conversion of existing distribution transformer structures to ring main units and conversion of existing pillar boxes into high rupturing capacity fuse 6-way pillar boxes are also on the list.With respect to Cheyyur Ultra Mega Power Project, Thangamani sought early finalising of bidding documents with an option to use domestic coal to bring down the cost of the power.
Other demands included allocation of entire 2,000 MW of power generated out of Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant Units 3 and 4 to Tamil Nadu. He requested a dedicated green energy corridor to evacuate surplus wind power from the state. “Tamil Nadu is in a position to sell about 1,000 MW of wind power to other states, to fulfill their Renewable Purchase Obligation,” the release said. Tangedco CMD M Saikumar accompanied Thangamani.