Can’t Deny Solar Producers Their Right To Connectivity, Rules APTEL

Highlights :

  • The judgment came to the fore after a Telangana discom opposed synchronization of solar power with grid on technical grounds.
  • The APTEL order said that solar power producers have full rights to seek connection with the grid.
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In its latest judgment, the Appellate Tribunal For Electricity (APTEL) said that nobody could deny solar power generators their right to seek connectivity/synchronization with the grid. The order from APTEL came after Hyderabad-based Southern Power Distribution Company of Telangana Limited challenged an impugned order of the Telangana State Electricity Commission (TSERC).

The TSERC earlier had directed the government-owned discom of Telangana to synchronize more than one solar power plant with the grid and allow them open access. In one case, the discom found that Tejas India Solar Private Limited (TISPL) ‘s technical feasibility report did not mention installing SCADA/DAS systems and denied synchronization. 

Another case was related to a solar power developer BERPL. The firm allegedly should have commissioned and synchronized its project within two years of issuing the bank guarantees to the discoms. The solar developer unforeseeable and force majeure events. In this case, the discom allegedly denied synchronization due to insufficient documents. 

In both cases, the State Commission had directed the discom to allow synchronization in both of these cases. The APTEL, in this case, maintained the order of the state commission and argued that the right to seek connectivity by solar developers and generators could be denied. 

“We find no merit in the argument of the Appellant that any SPP which is not commissioned within the specified time can be denied synchronization and grant of open access under the relevant provisions of the Act and the Rules and Regulations framed thereunder,” the APTEL order said. 

It also added, “Therefore, the Appellant’s argument that the synchronization of the SPP can be denied due to delay in commissioning of the SPP lacks merit, as it is the right of a generating station to seek connectivity/ synchronization with the grid if it complies with the Regulations notified under section 177 of the Act.”

The order also said that the appellant (discom) also argued that it had to abide by the policy of the State government to provide 24 hours reliable power supply to all consumers, including agricultural services. 

“Thus, the Appellant had to make necessary arrangements for adequate power procurement from various conventional & non-conventional sources and as a result of which, the network became completely loaded; therefore, the request of synchronization of SPD’s project cannot be considered due to non-availability of distribution corridor,” the APTEL order read. 

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