The 27 companies include two public sector undertakings of the Government of India, namely National Thermal Power Corporation Limited (NTPC) and the National Hydroelectric Power Corporation (NHPC).
Despite the BJP-led Centre terming the imposition of water cess on hydel projects in Himachal Pradesh “illegal and unconstitutional” and directing the Congress government in the state to withdraw its decision last month, 27 companies have registered themselves on the portal set up for the purpose to operate in the state.
The 27 companies include two public sector undertakings of the Government of India, namely National Thermal Power Corporation Limited (NTPC) and the National Hydroelectric Power Corporation (NHPC). NHPC runs the Chamera project in Chamba, while NTPC operates the Koldam power project.
The Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu government has kept ₹500 as the registration fee.
Besides the Centre’s opposition, a case has been filed against the state government’s decision in the Himachal Pradesh high court. The petition was first filed by Mallikarjuna Rao of GMR Energies for promoting the Holi Bajoli power project in Chamba but was withdrawn on technical grounds. Thereafter, the Allain Duhangan Power Project filed a petition on which the court issued the state and the central government a four-week notice.
The high court did not stay the registration process.
“Many companies have registered themselves on the portal and many others will do so in future,” said a high-level official of the state jal shakti department. “The portal will c,lose on may 20 , its clear in the act that if the power project don’t register themselves on the portal they will be deemed registered.