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Tuesday, 9 February 2021

6 companies in fray for Chandigarh Power Department privatisation

Dushyant Singh Pundir

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 8

Only six companies have been left in the fray to take over the UT Electricity Department.

UT Adviser Manoj Parida said six firms — Sterlite Power, ReNew Wing Energy, NESCL (NTPC), Adani Transmission Ltd, Tata Power and Torrent Power — had submitted their bids for the privatisation of the electricity wing of the UT Engineering Department. The Engineering Department had issued the Request for Proposal (RFP) to 20 intended bidders and today was the last date to submit the bids.

Staff up in arms

  • Employees of the UT Electricity Department, under the banner of the UT Powermen Union, today protested against the privatisation of the profit-making Electricity Department.

    Gopal Datt Joshi, general secretary of the union, termed the introduction of the Electricity Amendment Bill, 2021, in the Budget session as a betrayal. "If the Bill is passed in its present form, the consumers and employees will be the worst affected." he said. TNS

CB Ojha, Chief Engineer, UT, said the date to open bids would be intimated shortly. On November 9, 2020, the Engineering Department had invited bids for the purpose.

On a petition filed by the UT Powermen Union, a Division Bench of the Punjab and Haryana High Court had on December 1, 2020, stayed the tendering process regarding the privatisation of the Electricity Department.

The petitioner had contended that they were aggrieved by the decision to privatise the electricity wing by selling 100 per cent stake in the absence of any provision under Section 131 of the Electricity Act, 2003.

The Bench was also told that the process of privatisation of the wing could not be initiated at all, especially when it was running in profits. The sale of 100 per cent stake was unjust. It was economically efficient with distribution losses less than the target of 15 per cent fixed by the Centre. However, on January 12, the Supreme Court had stayed the order of the High Court and on January 14, the UT Administration resumed the sale of tender for the privatisation process.

from The Tribune

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