CCI clears three hydel projects stuck due to green hurdles

Cabinet Committee on Investment has cleared three hydro power projects, which were stuck due to environmental bottlenecks.

According to a Power Ministry official, the three hydel projects -- Tawang (800 MW), Tato (700 MW) and Teesta (520 MW) -- which were awaiting approvals for a long time have been cleared by CCI.

These projects in Arunachal Pradesh (Tawang and Tato) and (Teesta) Sikkim were sent to CCI from the Power Ministry in December, last year.

Teesta Stage-IV Hydroelectric Project, which was awarded to state-run NHPC in 2009, is a run of the river scheme proposed along river Teesta. The estimated project cost was Rs 3,594.74 crore.

Teesta is likely to supply electricity to Sikkim, West Bengal, Bihar, Orissa and Jharkhand, and expected to be commissioned in 2012.

The Tawang Hydroelectric Project is proposed on Tawangchu river. The estimated project cost at the time of award was Rs 6,112.30 crore.

The 700 MW Tato hydro power project in Arunachal Pradesh is being set up by Tato Hydro Power Private Ltd, a subsidiary of Reliance Power.

Reliance Power's Jharkhand Ultra Mega Power Project was also cleared in the same CCI meeting, last week.

The company will now be exempted from providing non-forest land to compensate for the loss of forest land acquired for the 4,000 MW Tilaiya UMPP.

It will be treated on a par with the other public sector projects. At present, only central government or public sector undertakings have exemption from the obligation to provide non-forest land.

CCI was constituted on January 2, 2013. The panel was constituted with the purpose of identifying projects in the infrastructure sector worth over Rs 1,000 crore, that were facing regulatory or environmental hurdles.

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