Major Development: Baglihar-II Trial Run Starts

Riyaz Ul Khaliq



Baghlihar Power Project (KL Image: Bilal Bahadur)

In a development that will help J&K improve its energy mess, the first unit of Baglihar-II has started trial run and will get into commercial generation early next month. The two subsequent units of 150 MW each will be commissioned within next two months, informed sources said.

The 450-MW Baglihar-I has already changed the profile of the state’s wholly owned Power Development Corporation is earning around Rs 1000 Crore a year. Addition of another phase to it, with the same capacity, will double the income as the cumulative generation will cross 5000 million units a year.

Phase-II of the project was slated to get ready with an investment of Rs 3113 Crore but officials said it might be ready with slightly less than that. So far, the cumulative expenditure has not crossed even Rs 2700 Crore. Both the phase has a debt equity ratio of 70:30.

Government sources revealed to Kashmir Life that the idea is not to sell the energy to third party and instead supply the same to the Power Development Department. The tariffs will be decided by the power regulator as and when the generation firms up, officials said. SPDC continues to sell half of the generation from Baglihar-I to manage the debt. But there is no obligation for following the same in the phase-II.

Mufti Muhammad Sayeed
Mufti Muhammad Sayeed

Baglihar power project, it may be recalled here, is the only major hydropower project that J&K’s SPDC owns. Most of its other assets are small generating units which lack sizable impact either on revenues or generation. However, the Corporation has chalked out aggressive plans to use its advantage that Baglihar has fetched it. Unlike pre-Baglihar era when no financial institution was willing to lend money to the SPDC, post-Baglihar situation is a contrast with lenders from public and private sector willing to commit as much Rs 40,000 Crore.

Government sources said Chief Minister was pleased to hear the breaking development and might invite Prime Minister to preside over the inauguration when the generation from phase-II’s first unit firms up.

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