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CEA data shows India has still not been able to close the ‘power’ gap

PW Bureau

For the financial year that ended on March 31, the country’s power deficit stood at 0.6 percent, just 0.1 percent down from the figures reported in FY 2017-18 New Delhi: India is still far from becoming a power-surplus nation, data sourced from the Central Electricity Authority (CEA) has showed. For the financial year that ended on March 31, the country’s power deficit stood at 0.6 percent, just 0.1 percent down from the figures reported in FY 2017-18. According to CEA, a total of 1,267,209 million units (MUs) of electricity was supplied against the requirement of 1,274,564 MUs. This means that the total power supplied fell short of the demand by 7,355 MUs.

Previous reports predicted India would be power-surplus by now

In a load generation balancing report (LGBR) released by CEA for 2018-19, the electricity authority had projected that overall energy and peak power surpluses would hover around 4.6 percent and 2.5 percent, respectively. This means that India would have been a power-surplus nation in FY2018-19. In 2017 as well, the CEA had projected that India would become a power-surplus nation in 2017-18. But the peak power deficit was 2.1 percent, while overall electricity deficit stood at 0.7 percent.

Can discoms be blamed?

A power sector expert opined, “The deficit is primarily due to discoms not being able to buy power. Their total outstanding due was Rs 40,698 crore toward power generators till January this year.” He added that India’s power generation capacity is in place, and power generation can be doubled but distribution companies (discoms) would have to pay their dues promptly.