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NTPC's Barh (Bihar)
Mega-Power Project Stage-II launched
New Delhi, September 22, 2008
The 2x660 Mw second stage of NTPC's mega-power project at
Barh near Patna, Bihar was launched with total investment is
pegged at Rs 7340 crores. The first 660 Mw unit will be
commissioned in March 2012 and the second 660 Mw unit will be
commissioned in January 2013.
Barh Stage-I begun in February 2005 is 3x660 Mw but it is
considerably behind schedule mainly because of long-standing
contractual disputes between NTPC and the Russian company
Technopromexport (TPE) which is the turnkey contractor for the
project. TPE is supplying the boilers and another Russian
company Power Machines is supplying the turbine-generators.
Unit 1 was supposed to have been commissioned by March 2009
but the current anticipated date is January 2011.
The other two units are also delayed by over two years. The
total cost of Stage-I is Rs 8700 crores, of which roughly Rs
3000 crores has already been spent. Material supply for the
first unit is almost complete but erection work has yet to
For the past few months, NTPC has been in dialogue with TPE
to sort out the disputes over price and time escalations and
get work resumed at the site. But there has been no
breakthrough and Jairam Ramesh said that NTPC has now given
time to TPE till September 24th before it starts adjudication
proceedings as provided for in the contract.
Jairam Ramesh also added that is a matter of the deepest
regret that such a prestigious project has had to witness such
delays and that he has personally intervened from time to time
to ensure that the project is back on stream. This was his
second visit to Barh in the last five months.
When all five 660 Mw units are fully functional, the Barh
project spread over around 3200 acres will be the single
largest power generating complex of NTPC. Over 98% of the land
has already been acquired. The associated transmission system
is being implemented by PGCIL. The foundation stone for the
project had been laid by Atal Bihari Vaypayee, the then Prime
Minister of India way back in March 1999.
The entire Barh saga is a very commentary on project
implementation in the public sector, Jairam Ramesh said after
the visit to the project site along with senior officials of
NTPC and BHEL. He added that the saga is still continuing.