Relax NDRF norms for power infra restoration, Odisha CM urges Rajnath

Bhubaneswar: Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik today wrote to Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh urging the latter to relax NDRF norms for restoration of power infrastructure in the state, which were extensively damaged in cyclonic storm FANI.

“I would like to bring to your notice that the power infrastructure in the district of Puri and parts of other districts has been extensively damaged by the recent Extremely Severe Cyclonic Storm FANI. The transmission and distribution is an integrated network consisting of extra high tension, high tension & low tension. According to the present NDRF norms for repair of damaged power sector, assistance is given for damaged conductors, poles and transformers upto the level of 11 KV only. Even the scale of assistance for the admissible items is highly inadequate,” Patnaik said in the letter.

Besides the large scale damage to 11 KV lines, distribution transformers and LT network admissible for repair and restoration under NDRF norms, extensive damage has also been caused to 220 KV/132 KV towers and transmission lines; grid sub-stations and power transformers; 33 KV poles, lines and primary sub-stations. As per preliminary report, the extent of damage due to FANI is estimated to be about Rs 1160 crore, the CM wrote.

The transmission and distribution companies are not in a position to finance the restoration works. As electricity is a basis necessity, the state government has undertaken restoration of power infrastructure on war footing from its own resources, he wrote.

However, the scale of damage to the power infrastructure is far too expensive to be taken care of by the State Government alone. It is requested that the NDRF norms may be relaxed to provide for actual cost of restoration of the entire power infrastructure damaged by the cyclone, Patnaik urged.

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