Despite losing out on the Sasan ultra mega power project when its partner was disqualified, Jindal Steel and Power Ltd is now looking to bid for the Tilaiya 4,000MW power project in Jharkhand.
“We will be interested in developing any local coal-based project. We are yet to fix a partner for the Tilaiya UMPP,” Sushil K. Maroo, director, finance, Jindal Steel.
The project includes establishment, operation and maintenance of a 4,000MW coal fired pithead power project including mine development and transportation of coal from the proposed allocated captive coal mines at North Karanpura.
The other companies interested in developing the Tilaiya project include American energy company AES Corp., NTPC Ltd, Larsen & Toubro Ltd, Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd, China’s largest power generation equipment manufacturer, Dongfang Electric Corp., Reliance Energy Ltd and DS Construction Pvt. Ltd, among others.
Tilaiya is among the remaining three projects that will be bid out. The government is poised to axe four of its nine showpiece power projects after they faced several roadblocks as reported by Mint on 10 August.
In the initial bidding for the Sasan, Jindal lost to Lanco Infratech Ltd’s and Globeleq Singpore Pte Ltd’s bid of Rs1.19 per unit tariff.
Then Jindal teamed up with Lanco Infratech to acquire the assets of Globeleq Singapore Pte Ltd but soon after the government disqualified Lanco’s bid awarding the project to Reliance.
Even the Jharkhand project has got its fair share of problems due to the Naxalite problem and the security reasons. “The area for the Jharkhand project is a both forest and Naxalite-infested area. It also has a lot of tribal presence. This is posing a land acquisition and displacement problem,” said a senior government official who did not wish to be identified.
Lanco Infratech is also interested in bidding for the Tilaiya project. L. Madhusudhan Rao, chairman, Lanco Infratech, said, “We are yet to fix a partner. The understanding with them (Jindal) was project-specific only for the Sasan project.”