Our Bureau

New Delhi, Jan. 20

THE Government will be announcing the National Electricity Policy over the next couple of weeks. The guidelines for competitive bidding and the norms for captive power plants would also be finalised shortly, the Power Secretary, Mr R. V. Shahi, said here on Thursday."We have finalised the National Electricity Policy and sent it to the Cabinet Secretariat, after which it will be put up before the Cabinet for approval," Mr Shahi said at a conference on the `Turnaround in the Power Sector.'

The Power Ministry has approved the guidelines for competitive bidding in consultation with the Central Electricity Authority, he said, adding the guidelines would be announced next week. The Ministry is also finalising rules for captive power plants, he said, adding that it has been sent to the Law Ministry for legal vetting.

The draft Electricity Policy, which was initially put up for public comments in June last year, had to be modified following the change in governments in some States and the change of guard at the Centre, he said. The key points of the policy include added emphasis on rural electrification, in line with the UPA Government's National Common Minimum Programme.

The policy would also include the issue of cross-subsidy to below-poverty-line families, he added.

The Electricity Policy would be followed by the presentation of the Tariff Policy and Rural Electrification Policy, Mr Shahi said.

The policy instruments will help bring more private players and investment in the power sector, he said.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated January 21, 2005)
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