Tripura signs Rs 2,275 crore agreement with ADB to improve power distribution network

Agartala, 31 Dec: The Tripura government has signed an agreement with Asian Development Bank (ADB) amounting to Rs 2,275 crore to strengthen and improve power distribution efficiency in the northeastern state, Deputy Chief Minister Jishnu Dev Varma said on Saturday.
Terming the agreement as “historic” for the state, Dev Varma said it is the single biggest project in any plan through an externally aided project. “The project agreement was signed by Power Secretary, Govt of Tripura, Brijesh Pandey and Nilaya Mitesh, the officer in charge of ADB’s Indian Resident Mission, New Delhi, remotely on Friday after extensive deliberation and evolution”, Dev Varma said at a press conference here.
The deputy chief minister said the ADB project will support the state government’s efforts to strengthen its power sector by replacing inefficient power plants and strengthening the distribution system. Of the Rs 2,275 crore fund, the central government will repay Rs 1,820 crore while the state is supposed to provide Rs 455 crore, he said, adding the project will be implemented in the next three years.
Heaping praise on Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman for clearing the first externally aided project for the power sector in the state, Dev Varma said the state government will undertake massive renovation of two power projects – Rukhia in Sepahijala district and Gumati Hydro project in Gomati district. Besides, there will be a lot of work in the transmission sector to improve the existing system.
At present, gas based Rukhia power project produces 66 MW power and its installed capacity will be doubled by modernizing the plant, he said, adding the Dumbur hydro power project’s capacity will be increased from 5 MW to 10 MW. The externally aided project will benefit five to six lakh consumers and it will also generate 6,000 to 6,500 direct jobs in different levels.
Asserting that Rs 3,000 crore will be invested in the northeastern state’s power sector, the DyCM said the government aims to provide quality power supply to the consumers. However, no new power plant is proposed in the ADB project. (PTI)
Currently, the northeastern state generates 84 MW power out of the state’s per day demand of 450/460 MW. It receives around 500 MW power from OTPC, NEEPCO and other central PSUs. The states export 160 MW power to Bangladesh.
Apart from the ADB funding, an additional amount of Rs 800 crore will be spent to improve the power distribution which includes underground transmission line in Agartala city and installation of smart electric meters. PTI