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Government sanctions a major power transmission scheme for Arunachal Pradesh & Sikkim to bring them fully into the grid

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, today approved the Comprehensive Scheme for Strengthening of Transmission & Distribution (T&D) Systems (CSST&DS) in Arunachal Pradesh and Sikkim at an estimated cost of Rs.4754.42 crore. The scheme is to be taken up under a new Central Sector Plan Scheme of Ministry of Power (MoP).

As the intra-state T&D systems in the North-Eastern states have remained very weak, the Central Electricity Authority (CEA) developed the CSST&DS for the North East Region (NER) in consultation with the Power Grid Corporation of the India Limited (PGCIL) and State Governments concerned.

Presently, only 5 out of 20 districts of Arunachal Pradesh are connected to transmission network at 132/220 KV. The 33 KV system is the backbone of power distribution system in the State. Due to low population density spread over its geographical area of 84,000, power demand in Arunachal Pradesh is scattered over large distances. Hence it is necessary to provide 132 KV connectivity in the state for proper voltage management and lower distribution losses. Similarly, the distribution system in Sikkim mainly relies on 66 KV network, which needs to be strengthened substantially.

In view of this, it is proposed to take up projects for strengthening intra-state T&D systems of the two States through 31 new 132 KV sub-stations, 14 substations of 66/11 KV, 2035 km of transmission lines (132 & 220 KV) and 2204 km of transmission lines (33 & 66 KV). The project would be implemented through PGCIL with its consultancy fee of 1.2 percent of the execution cost. After commissioning, the projects would be owned and maintained by the State Governments. Initially the project was proposed to be funded under Non-Lapsable Central Pool of Resource (NLCPR – Central) of the Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region (DONER). But DONER has conveyed its inability due to budgetary constraints. Hence it is proposed to take it up through a new Central Sector Scheme under the MoP`s budget. The project is to be implemented within 48 months from the first fund release to PGCIL.