NEW DELHI: NTPC incurred additional expenditure of Rs 6,869 crore on importing coal in six years between 2010 and 2015, the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) said in its latest report on fuel management at the state-run generation utility's power stations. NTPC executives said the auditor's conclusion was not correct as it was based on a comparison between the government-controlled price offered by Coal India and market price of fuel imported through global bidding to keep power plants spinning in the face domestic supply shortage.
"The power stations incurred extra expenditure on procurement of coal at higher cost compared to the rates notified by Coal India during the period 2010-11 to 2015-16," the CAG said in its report tabled in Parliament on Friday.
The period referred to in the CAG report was marred by acute shortage of domestic coal supplies from Coal India due to poor production growth and irregular despatch. The CAG report acknowledges the situation, which somewhat supports the contentions by NTPC executives.
"During 2012-13, the (coal) stock level was at super critical position (stock less than four days requirement) in seven stations for more than six months and similar situation prevailed in four stations during 2013-14.
There was some improvement in 2014-15, but three stations reported super critical stock levels," the report said. "Further, domestic coal stock dropped to zero level at stations during 2012-13 to 2014-15. During 2010-11 to 2015-16, 11 out of 13 stations covered in audit reported a generation loss of 19,546.26 million units of electricity with potential revenue loss of Rs 4,299.80 crore, due to units being taken out of operation or being operated at partial load in view of coal shortage," it added.