Sushilkumar Shinde’s speech, Union Minister of Power
Energy Conclave 2006, 26 July Inaugural Session
Prime Minister Dr Manmaohan Singhji, Dr. Kirit Parikh ji, Shri R.V.Shahi,
Shri Rakesh Bakshi,
ladies and gentlemen,
would like to begin by thanking the Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan
Singhji for personal attention and leadership he is providing in
the vital area of energy. A sound energy policy, and more importantly,
its coordinated implementation is the key to the success of our
economic development. This is particularly important as India aims
to grow at 8 to 10 % per annum. In the 21st century,
issues relating to energy are getting increasing focus of the international
of Integrated Energy Policy was one of the first tasks the Prime
Minister initiated on assuming office. While the final report is
now ready, on issues on which there was consensus, action has already
been initiated. The decision of the Prime Minister to constitute
the Energy Coordination Committee under his own Chairmanship has
helped in timely decision making on a number of key issues.
this regard, I congratulate the Integrated Research and Action for
Development (IRADe) for the timely organization of this Energy Conclave.
I am confident that this laudable step by Dr. Mrs. Jyoti Parikh
to bring together opinion makers, senior officials and experts of
the energy sector for a brainstorming on ways to implement the energy
policy will provide valuable inputs for our future course of action.
I am keen that some solutions and suggestions should emerge from
The provision of modern clean energy to all, for lighting, cooking
and productive economic activities of the present industrial age
at reasonable and affordable rates, is the key challenge in the
energy sector. This is vital for achieving rapid economic growth
at 8 to 10 % per annum which is essentially aimed at removal of
poverty and employment generation especially in rural areas. I appreciate
the articulation of this objective in the Integrated Energy Policy
to the 2001 census approximately 57% of rural households did not
have access to electricity the common minimum programme of our UPA
government envisages provision of access to electricity for all
households within five years. With the blessing and support of Srimati
Sonia Ghandhiji, Chairperson of UPA and Hon’ble Prime Minister Dr.
Manmohan Singhji, the ambitious Rajiv Gandhi Grameen Vidutikaran
Yojana was launched in April 2005 to transform the vision of the
NCMP into reality. I am glad to inform you that in 2005-06, target
of electrifying 10,000 villages was completed. This year 40,000
villages would be electrified.
need to seriously consider a programme, on the lines of the Rajiv
Gandhi Grameen Vidutikaran Yojana, to provide clean cooking fuel
to all rural households in a time bound manner as envisaged in the
national Electricity Policy 2005 clearly states out the goal of
making India free of energy as well as peaking shortages by the
year 2012. It aims at creating of adequate spare capacity through
a spinning reserve. While preparing and implementing the 11 Plan
we must ensure the achievement of this objective.
key to making power shortages a matter of history, in the short
to medium term would be the speedy development of our coal mining
reserves. Our coal is relatively clean and enables us to provide
affordable electricity. NTPC’s weighted average tariff is about
Rs 1.60 and has been increasing in nominal terms at rates, lower
than the rate of inflation. The Indian Consumers have benefited
form the good work done by our public sector and now from the regulatory
regime that we have created.
the field of energy, we need to be pragmatic and cautious on the
approach of deregulated market determined prices. Until market mature
in all segments, regulatory intervention appears inevitable in power,
coal and petroleum fuel. I am happy that the report has recognized
this need. We need to keep in mind that energy pricing in a transition
phase has to be such that it allows our manufacturing to be competitive.
development of hydro power with the optimal utilization of the potential
of our river basins for flood control, irrigation and hydro power
generation was a cherished dream of our Prime Minister Pt. Jawaharlal
Nehru who lovingly called the Bhakhra Dam the "temple of modern
India". This paved the wave for the green revolution which
has transformed Punjab and Haryana into the granary of India.
power development received a new momentum with Rajivji’s confidence
and dynamism, who in his tenure took personal interest in initiating
the development of large hydro projects like the Naptha Jhakri Project
of 1500 MW with s long tunnel in the Himalayas of 27 kms, and the
Tehri Project of 1000MW with 260 meter high dam.
now have the satisfaction of having finally overcome the difficult
problems of geology and rehabilitation and resettlement related
to large hydro projects. We completed the Naptha Jhakri project
of 1500 MW in 2003-04. First unit of the Tehri Project of 1000MW
has been commissioned and all the other three will be completed
during this year. The Sardar Sarovar Project of 1450 MW, the Indira
Sagar Project of 1000MW have also been completed. The Tala project
of 1020 MW in neighbouring Bhutan would be completed this year.
In this Plan we will add approximately 10000MW of hydro power capacity,
more than the capacity added in any two plans in the past. We are
improving capabilities in handling the difficult geology of the
Himalayas and better project management. We can, with confidence,
think of fully developing the feasible hydro potential of the country
in coming years, an objective which has been well advocated in the
Integrated Energy Policy Report. It is reassuring that now even
the international community is beginning to recognize the need for
supporting the development of hydro power, irrespective of size
as a renewable source of energy. I am convinced that we need to
concentrate on the huge hydro potential in the country in order
to produce clean energy.
efficiency and energy conservation are going to the key challenges
in the energy sector in coming decades. I am glad to inform in this
regard, my ministry has taken and is planning several significant
the end I would like to express my appreciation to Dr. Kirit Parikh
and the members of Committee for articulating a clear vision for
India’s energy policy. Our next task obviously has to be to see
how we implement various suggestions and recommendations.