Anil Ambani-led Reliance Power today said it has terminated the contract for Rs 36,000 crore Tilaiya ultra mega power project in Jharkhand over inordinate delays in land acquisition.
The firm had, in August 2009, won rights to set up a 3,960 MW power plant at Hazaribagh in Jharkhand after bidding a levelised tariff of Rs 1.77 per unit but couldn’t start work on the project as the state government had not provided the required land even after more than five years.
Jharkhand Integrated Power Ltd, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Reliance Power, “has terminated the Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) of its 3,960 MW Tilaiya Ultra Mega Power Project (UMPP) in district Hazaribagh, Jharkhand,” the company said in a statement.
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Issuing interim injunctions in two separate cases, the Madras High Court has directed Tamil Nadu state government authorities to maintain status quo on the matter of possession of land for the 4000 MW coal-fired power plant cum captive port in Cheyyur, Kanchipuram district. The latest injunction was ordered on 26 March, 2015 in a case filed by A. Kasthuri who owns a residential plot in Panaiyur vilage. The district revenue authorities are acquiring around 1000 acres of land for the project under the Tamil Nadu Acquisition of Land for Industrial Purposes Act, 1997. Acquisition proceedings are at an advanced stage, and awards for compensation have been made. However, the lands have not changed possession as many of the farmers and land-owners have refused to part with the papers or hand-over the land.
Two land-owners with plots in Panaiyur village have approached the High Court opposing the acquisition of their land for setting up a captive port for the Cheyyur power project. They have claimed that the Industrial Purposes Act which was used to acquire the land does not have any self-contained provision for calculation of compensation. The suit argues that since the Act relies on the Land Acquisition Act, 1894, for computation of compensation, and since the 1894 Act has been replaced by the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013, settling land acquisition or calculating compensation under the 1997 law cannot be maintained in law.
The case is pending and the court is yet to take a final view on the matter.