We are examining the suggestion to merge Renewable and Power Ministries: RK Singh

Twesh Mishra New Delhi | Updated on June 02, 2019

RK Singh, Minister for Power   -  assuming office

The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) and the Ministry of Power (MOP) may be merged to form one integrated Ministry if a suggestion for the same finds favour within the government.

Newly-appointed Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Power and New and Renewable Energy, RK Singh, confirmed that such a suggestion has been received, but said that there has not been enough deliberation for it to become a proposal within the government.

“Certain suggestions have been made that the two (MNRE and MOP) should actually be one ministry as is there in most countries. (The idea is) to have one ministry which looks at all energy. So we are examining that, but it hasn’t taken the form of a proposal as yet,” Singh said after taking charge.

Officials aware of the suggestion said the idea was also discussed during the recently held ‘Chintan Baithak’ (brainstorming session) between government officials and stakeholders from the renewable energy sector.

“The merger of the two ministries makes sense in the light of balancing of power and common transmission infrastructure needs that renewable energy and conventional energy generators share. The consumer really does not know whether the Power Distribution Company (Discom) is supplying them thermal or renewable energy,” a clean energy sector official said.

Payment dues

The industry also said that both conventional and renewable energy are facing troubles due to delay of payment from Discoms.

“But the MNRE’s hands are somewhat tied up when dealing with non-payment by Discoms. So a combined ministry will help take up the case of non-payment on behalf of both sectors with the Discoms,” another official said.

Singh said the issue of non-payment by Discoms has been flagged to him and this is an issue that burdens both conventional and non-conventional power generation.

He said, “It is a matter of worry, this has been flagged to me. It is a problem which is true not only for renewable, it is true also for conventional power, we have thought about this in the past…and we will bring in some system which will ensure that they will be paid.”

Published on June 02, 2019

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