Private power producers have asked Coal India for more rakes to alleviate the shortage of coal at their plants from its arm South Eastern Coalfields' Korba fields. They have pointed out that the share of rake loading for non-power and e-auction category of consumers have come down, which is being used to ramp up supplies to state and central sector power plants. "Most of the Private Power plants are facing supercritical stock levels (for less than four days) and are being forced to reduce generation/ back down units," Association of Power Producers (APP) said in a letter to Coal India Chairman Gopal Singh. It further said,"..necessary instructions may be issued for augmentation of loading in rakes per day for Private Power plants, to help alleviate the coal shortage and enable them to meet their generation commitments". According to an analysis done the by association for the last four months about loading rakes per day (RPD) for the period from 4th to 17th day of each month from Korba (including Raigarh) area and the proportion of share of loading on account of state/central sector plants has increased 49 per cent of the total kitty in October from 28 per cent in July. The state and central power plants got 7 RPD in July during the review period, which increased to 12.1 RPD in October this year.
The private power plants got 9.6 RPD in July, which remained almost same at 9.5 RPD in October. The central/state sector plants got the benefits of reduction in supplies to non-Power/e-auction category of consumers from 8.1 RPD in July to 3.1 RPD in October this year. The association said in the letter, "The reduction in loading of Non-Power rakes has led to an equal increase in loading for State/Central Power plants, and no incremental loading for Private Power plants". According to Central Electricity Authority data for October 26, as many as 16 non-pithead power plants had coal stocks for less than four days, while 10 had for less than a week, out of the total 112 projects monitored by it. A power sector expert said that the short supply situation in the country had led to the price of power zooming to over Rs 10 per unit level this month, when consumes for captive use beelined at exchanges to buy power.