Himachal Pradesh government has chalked out an ambitious action plan for speedy exploitation of vast hydro power potential available in the State. The State has 27436 MW identified hydro power potential out of which 10351 MW has already been exploited.
The State Government has taken decisions towards easing out the policy provisions to facilitate investors to overcome the bottlenecks being faced in implementation of projects. A new mechanism has been evolved to obtain various clearances at district level in a time bound manner. The developers have been facilitated to submit their applications to the concerned Deputy Commissioners instead of applying to various district level offices for obtaining different clearances.
Keeping in view the emergent need for ensuring safety and quality control in hydro power projects, the State Government has created a safety and quality control authority under the aegis of Directorate of Energy. Mandatory procedural guidelines for dam safety and operational procedures have been enforced with specific codes and standards practices being followed worldwide.
Mandatory inspections of operational projects have been ensured and flood safety measures have also been regulated to avoid any mishap during monsoon. A monitoring unit has also been established to look after the progress of projects and also to assess the milestones achieved by the project developers.
The State government has simplified the procedure for obtaining techno-clearance and the Directorate of Energy has been authorized to lay down procedure and issuance of technical concurrence to the projects comprising of the cost less than Rs. 1000 crore. So far 167 projects of about 700 MW capacity have been accorded technical concurrence during last four years. About 31 hydro power projects aggregating to 2067 MW capacity have also been commissioned during this period. 800 MW Koldam, 412 MW Rampur, 130 MW Kashang 10 MW Ghanvi on Satluj, 520 MW Parbati-III on Beas and 36 MW Chanju on Ravi are some important new projects commissioned by different agencies during the present tenure of the State Governememnt. NTPC, NHPC, SJVNL, HPPCL and HPSEB Ltd. are leading agencies actively involved in this venture.
H.P State Electricity Board has taken initiated to execute 22 projects, having 300 MW capacity on Beas, Ravi and Pabbar basins. To start with 18 MW project will be executed at Raisan in Kullu district on pilot basis. World Bank has already accorded its consent to provide funds for the same.
The State Electricity Board has already commissioned 22 hydel projects of 487.45 MW capacity and 100 MW Uhl-II project has been almost completed for which trial run will be done soon. State Government has entrusted the work of four more projects-Devi Kothi, (16 MW), Sai Kothi-I (15 MW), Sai Kothi-II (16.50 MW) and Hael (18 MW) in Chamba district to the State Electricity Board.
The State Government is also working for proper rehabilitation of the project affected families. To benefit the affected families, a provision for generation of revenue out of sale of 1 percentage additional free power payable after commissioning of the projects has been made. The government has successfully implemented the scheme, first of its kind in the country, and so far, Rs. 6.74 crore has been transferred to the eligible families since 2012-13. The government is also providing 100 unit free electricity as incentive to project affected families.
The State Government has realized revenue of Rs. 3345 crore by way of sale of free and equity power during this tenure and efforts are being made to involve global players in this field so that the identified hydel potential could be exploited in a time bound manner.