Maharashtra Entities Asked to Refund Evacuation Cost Incurred by Bagasse-Based Project

The state commission has ordered MEDA to pay ₹20 million to the power generator


The Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Commission (MERC) has ruled in favor of Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar Sahakari Sakar Karkhana Ltd. which had filed a petition regarding its 25.7 MW bagasse-based cogeneration power project.

The petition was filed for a refund of power evacuation infrastructure expenditure from Maharashtra State Electricity Transmission Co. Ltd. (MSETCL) and Maharashtra Energy Development Agency (MEDA).

The company had requested the commission to direct MSETCL to immediately refund the amount of ₹15.517 million (~$0.22 million) and to direct MEDA to refund ₹20 million (~$0.29 million) on or before March 31, 2019.

After going through submissions made, the MERC noted that the company had commissioned its 25.7 MW project on March 6, 2015, connected with 132 kV substation of MSETCL. It had executed its EPA with MSEDCL on June 7, 2004, which was amended on February 22, 2011, for a change of connectivity from 33 kV to 132 kV level. This EPA was further amended on March 18, 2014, for capacity augmentation from 16 MW to 25.7 MW.

The commission found that request for a refund of ₹15.517 million (~$0.22 million) from MSETCL is without taking into consideration the relevant provisions agreed between the parties, especially with regards to the stipulations in the government policies applicable during that period.

As per the policy, the upper limit for the refund for evacuation cost for cogeneration projects is ₹40 million (~$0.58 million). The commission stated that MSETCL has to recover the additional expenditure of ₹2.287 million (~$0.033 million) from the bagasse project company.

For the request for a refund of ₹20 million (~$0.29 million) from MEDA, the commission noted that the electricity agency must act in line with the provisions of the government policy and therefore, the petitioner will approach MEDA with  the documents under provisions of the state government policies for the refund of ₹20 million after settling the dues of MSETCL amounting to ₹2.287 million (~$0.033 million). MEDA must refund the amount within a month of document submission.

Recently, the Maharashtra commission approved the procurement of bagasse-based co-generation power by MSEDCL for FY 2018-19 for meeting its non-solar renewable purchase obligations.

Image credit: Ulka Industries