Himachal Pradesh Government Plans New Energy Policy, Aims to Initiate 500 MW Solar Projects This Year


In a recent meeting of the Energy Department, Chief Minister Thakur Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu announced the government’s intention to formulate a new Energy Policy, with the primary objective of securing a larger share for Himachal Pradesh in various hydropower projects. The proposed policy entails significant changes, including the complete abolition of the provision for deferment of free power royalty, along with revised revenue sharing arrangements.


Under the new policy framework, the state government seeks to enhance its share of revenue from hydropower projects. Currently, the provision allows for a 12 percent share during the initial 12 years, followed by 18 percent for the subsequent 18 years, and a consistent 30 percent for the final 10 years. However, the proposed revisions call for an increased share, with a provision of 15 percent for the first 12 years, 20 percent for the subsequent 18 years, and 30 percent for the final 10 years.

Chief Minister Sukhu expressed determination to explore opportunities for expanding the state’s share in projects that have already recovered their costs. To achieve this, he announced plans to initiate correspondence with the Central Government and other Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs). Furthermore, the government intends to grant land leases for a period of forty years for all upcoming hydropower projects, in accordance with the policy guidelines.

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During the meeting, Chief Minister Sukhu voiced concerns regarding delays in the implementation of hydro power projects by central PSUs. He instructed the Energy Department to issue notices to address the non-compliance of pre-implementation and implementation agreements. Additionally, he emphasized the need to streamline the process of obtaining No Objection Certificates (NOCs) for the construction of hydro power projects.


Highlighting the significance of timely project execution, Chief Minister Sukhu cited the state’s existing portfolio of 172 commissioned hydropower projects, with a cumulative capacity of 11,149.50 MW, along with 58 ongoing projects with a capacity of 2,454 MW. He stressed the importance of minimizing unnecessary delays and urged the Energy Department to establish a robust monitoring mechanism. Delays, he cautioned, lead to financial losses for the state exchequer. To enhance efficiency, the Directorate of Energy will be strengthened, and artificial intelligence will be leveraged to optimize departmental operations.

Chief Minister Sukhu expressed disappointment over certain hydro power projects that have yet to commence construction despite availing themselves of a one-time amnesty. To rectify this, he called for the immediate cancellation of project allotments in such cases, followed by the publication of fresh advertisements. Emphasizing the critical role of power generation as a primary source of state revenue, he asserted that any potential losses to the state exchequer would not be tolerated.

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In addition to addressing hydropower projects, the Chief Minister also reviewed the progress of solar projects being undertaken in the state. With a target of initiating 500 MW of solar power projects this year, he urged the department to expedite construction efforts.

The meeting witnessed the presence of prominent officials, including Industries Minister Harshwardhan Chauhan, Principal Advisor to the Chief Minister Ram Subhag Singh, Chief Secretary Prabodh Saxena, Principal Secretary to Chief Minister Bharat Khera, Secretary MPP & Power Rajeev Sharma, OSD to the Chief Minister Gopal Sharma, Director of the Energy Department Harikesh Meena, and other senior officers.

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