Jain: Coal scarcity in country created for somebody’s benefit

A scarcity of coal in the country was “created for somebody’s benefit,” Delhi Power Minister Satyendar Jain said Thursday.

“A huge scarcity of coal was created in the country for somebody’s benefit… Coal was not taken from our mines. Then, the Delhi government and other governments made noise about the shortage of coal in power plants. First, they said Jain is lying. Now, the power plants have been directed to use 10% of imported coal. The impact of this is that the average power cost will increase by 30%. Why is this? Do we not have coal mines?” he said.

Jain was speaking at a stakeholder consultation for Delhi’s new solar policy. The Dialogue and Development Commission (DDC) signed a partnership last week with RMI India to develop a new solar policy. DDC Vice-Chairman Jasmine Shah said the new policy is likely to be ready by June, and that a lot has changed since the previous one was introduced in 2016.

Addressing the meeting, Shah said, “The total installed capacity of rooftop solar panels in Delhi is 230 MW. 83% of the capacity has been installed after the Delhi Solar Policy of 2016, marking the policy’s importance.” Consumers,  DISCOM representatives, think tanks and solar developers attended the meeting.

The Power department’s Additional Chief Secretary Satya Gopal said, “The contribution of solar power in the energy basket of Delhi is approximately 7% and from other renewable sources is 8.4%. The overall share of renewable energy is around 15%.”

The Power Minister also identified some issues that are to be addressed. Consumers should be able to get panels shifted if a building is to be reconstructed, he said.

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