Durgapur Project Ltd: Govt to engage private firm to prepare report
DPL, the state owned power utility was incorporated in 1961 and consisted of Coke Oven Batteries, By-products Plant, Gas Grid Project, Thermal Power Plant and Water Works. Its main objective was to promote development of various large, medium and small scale industries in and around Durgapur and other places of the state where six out of eight units at DPL have been lying defunct for a long time.
Its main objective was to promote development of various large, medium and small scale industries in and around Durgapur and other places of the state where six out of eight units at DPL have been lying defunct for a long time.
State power department will assign a private firm with expertise in dealing in such issues which will prepare a detailed report on the present situation of DPL and how it was functioning and what are the areas which need a complete overhaul in order to make it a profit making body. The power department will give a time limit to the firm within which they have to prepare a report. After studying the report, the department will send the report to the Chief Minister and finance minister for their consideration.
It is a major initiative taken by the state government to enhance the production of the multi-utility growth propeller. Mamata Banerjee government after coming to power in 2011, had laid enormous emphasis in the power sector. The generation of power in the state has seen a new height in all its divisions of solar, thermal and hydro-electric projects.
It may be mentioned that Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had instructed the newly appointed power minister Sovandeb Chattopadhyay to take necessary steps so that DPL can be turned into a profit making body. Following the instruction from the Chief Minister, Chattopadhyay had taken up various steps to revive and renovate the state owned power utility where there are around 1,000 permanent workers and 400 contractual workers.
Last Monday, Chattopadhyay held a high level meeting with the senior officials from the DPL and the power department and chalked out a comprehensive plan for the revival of this age old power unit. Issues relating to the financial condition of DPL, the procurements yet to be made for a complete revamp and the losses incurred by the organisation were discussed at length in the meeting.
Chattopadhyay said that they would engage a firm which will submit a report to the department in a time bound manner following which the decision will be taken in regard to the next course of action.
It will provide suggestions to the state government on how to improve the production at DPL and restart the units that had remained un-operational for long time. It will also recommend what are the necessary procurements required to resume normal functioning of the plant. “DPL needs a complete overhaul. We will take steps after considering the recommendations submitted by the firm which will be assigned to do the job. It will conduct a study and give us detailed report on the present status of DPL.
“We have to consider various issues including the rehabilitation packages. The coke oven plant remains in an open air which also requires an attention,” Chattopadhyay maintained. During the erstwhile Left Front government, the DPL had become a den of CPI(M) leaders who would “unethically” control the recruitment of employees. It was often alleged that the employees were recruited without proper assessment.
Burdwan lobby of CPI(M) led by the then power minister Mrinal Banerjee, Nirupam Sen former Industry minister, Jiban Roy Rajya Sabha MP of CPI(M) and veteran party leader Madan Ghosh used to control DPL. No attention was given for its upgradation to make sure it makes profit.